The Associations Between Maladaptive Personality Traits, Craving, Alcohol Use, and Adolescent Problem Gambling: An Italian Survey Study

  • Maria CiccarelliEmail author
  • Giovanna Nigro
  • Mark D. Griffiths
  • Francesca D’Olimpio
  • Marina Cosenza
Original Paper


Although gambling disorder (GD) criteria do not explicitly address craving, it has received increased attention because it has been found to be a significant predictor of gambling severity. Furthermore, recent findings have suggested that both alcohol consumption and maladaptive personality traits may be risk factors among adult GD. To date, no study has evaluated the relative contribution of these factors in adolescent gambling behavior. Consequently, the present study investigated the relationship between gambling severity, craving, maladaptive personality traits, and alcohol use among adolescents. The sample comprised 550 Italian high-school students (50.2% males), aged 14–19 years (mean age = 16.24 years; SD  = 1.56). Participants were administered the South Oaks Gambling Screen-Revised for Adolescents, Gambling Craving Scale (GACS), Personality Inventory for DSM-5-Brief Format (PID-5-BF), and Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT). Results indicated that relative to both non-gamblers and non-problem gamblers, at-risk gamblers and problem gamblers scored higher on GACS, PID-5-BF and AUDIT. Regression analysis showed that Antagonism and Disinhibition PID-5-BF dimensions, Anticipation and Desire GACS subscales, and AUDIT total score were the best predictors of adolescent gambling involvement. These findings provide the first empirical evidence of associations between problematic gambling, craving, alcohol consumption, and maladaptive personality traits in adolescence.


Adolescent gambling Adolescent problem gambling Adolescent gambling disorder Gambling personality Gambling craving 



This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversità degli Studi della Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”CasertaItaly
  2. 2.Psychology DepartmentNottingham Trent UniversityNottinghamUK

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