Problem Gambling in New Mexico: 1996 and 1998

  • Randall Starling
  • Jason Blankenship
  • Philip May
  • Gill Woodall


Included in both the 1996 and 1998 Survey of Gambling Behavior in New Mexico was a scale of individual problem gambling. To assess problems related to gambling behavior, questions were developed using the DSM-IV criteria for pathological gambling. The purpose of this paper is to describe problem gamblers in New Mexico. Descriptive data indicate that 12% (n = 321) of the respondents (N = 2,674) reported problem gambling behavior. Further analysis reveal that 51% of those reporting problem gambling behavior were male, and 48% of respondents were married. Forty-eight percent of problem gambler respondents identified themselves as Hispanic ethnicity and 37% non-Hispanic whites. The mean age of problem gamblers was 37.4 years, and the mean annual income was $45,638. Data were separated by survey year to analyze any changes in reported problem gambling. Overall, 12,008 people per 100,000 population reported a mild to severe gambling problem in the period 1996–1998. Statistical significance was revealed in some gambling activities between low/moderate and serious problem gamblers. Recommendations include replicating this survey in New Mexico to determine additional patterns of problem gambling.


Gambling Problem gambling Casinos New Mexico Gaming 


  1. Abbott, M. W., Williams, M. W., & Volberg, R. A. (2004). A prospective study of problem and regular nonproblem gamblers living in the community. Substance Use & Misuse, 39, 855–884.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. American Psychiatric Association (1980). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (3rd. ed.) . Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.Google Scholar
  3. American Psychiatric Association (1994). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (4th ed.) . Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.Google Scholar
  4. Brown, S. L., Rodda, S., & Phillips, J. G. (2004). Differences between problem and nonproblem gamblers in subjective arousal and affective valence amongst electronic gaming machine players. Addictive Behaviors, 29, 1863–1867.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Clotfelter, C. T., & Cook, P. J. (1989). Selling hope: State lotteries in America. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  6. Cullerton, R. P. (1989). The prevalence rates of pathological gambling: A look at methods. Journal of Gambling Behavior, 5, 22–41.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Dickerson, M. G. (1993). A preliminary exploration of a two-stage methodology in the assessment of the extent and degree of gambling-related problems in the Australian population. In W. R. Eadington, & J. A. Cornelius (Eds.), Gambling behavior and problem gambling (pp. 347–363). Reno, NV: Institute for the Study of Gambling and Commercial Gaming.Google Scholar
  8. Dowling, N., Smith, D., & Thomas, T. (2005). Electronic gaming machines: Are they the ‘crack-cocaine’ of gambling? Addiction, 100, 33–45.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Jones, J. (2006). Devastating impact: Quick state study reveals as many as 108,000 New Mexicans may be problem gamblers. The Albuquerque Journal, Jan. 12, A1–4.Google Scholar
  10. Kallick, M., Suits, D., Dielman, T., & Hybels, J. (1979). A survey of American gambling attitudes and behavior. Ann Arbor, MI: Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan.Google Scholar
  11. Lesieur, H. R., & Blume, S. B. (1987). The South Oaks Gambling Screen (SOGS): A new instrument for the identification of pathological gamblers. American Journal of Psychiatry, 144, 1184–1188.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. National Opinion Research Center (1999). Gambling impact and behavior study. Chicago, IL: National Opinion Research Center.Google Scholar
  13. Orford, J., Spronston, K., Erens, B., White, C., & Mitchell, L. (2003). Gambling and problem gambling in Britain. London: Brunner-Routledge.Google Scholar
  14. Volberg, R. A. (1996). Gambling and problem gambling in New York: A 10-year replication survey, 1986–1996. Report to the New York Council on Problem Gambling.Google Scholar
  15. Volberg, R. A. (2002). Gambling and problem gambling in Nevada. Report to the Nevada Dept. of Human Resources. Carson City, NV: Dept. of Human Resources.Google Scholar
  16. Volberg, R. A. (2004). Fifteen years of problem gambling prevalence research: What do we know? Where do we go? eGambling: The Electronic Journal of Gambling Issues, February 2004.Google Scholar
  17. Walker, M. B. (1992). The psychology of gambling. Oxford: Pergamon Press.Google Scholar
  18. Walker, M. B., & Dickerson, M. G. (1996). The prevalence of problem and pathological gambling: A critical analysis. Journal of Gambling Studies, 12, 233–249.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Wallisch, L. S. (1993). Gambling in Texas: 1992 Texas survey of adult gambling behavior. Austin, TX: Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse.Google Scholar
  20. Welte, J. W., Barnes, G. M., Wieczorek, W. F., Tidwell, M., & Parker, J. (2001). Alcohol and gambling pathology among US adults: Prevalence, demographic patterns and comorbidity. Journal of Studies on Alcohol, 62, 706–712.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. Welte, J. W., Barnes, G. M., Wieczorek, W. F., Tidwell, M., & Parker, J. (2002). Gambling participation in the US—Results from a national survey. Journal of Gambling Studies, 18, 313–337.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Wiebe, J., Single, E., & Falkowski-Ham, A. (2001). Measuring gambling and problem gambling in Ontario. Toronto: Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse and Responsible Gambling Council (Ontario).Google Scholar
  23. Wulfert, E., Hartley, J., Lee, M., Wang, N., Franco, C., & Sodano, R. (2005). Gambling screens: Does shortening the time frame affect their psychometric properties? Journal of Gambling Studies, 21, 521–535.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Randall Starling
    • 1
  • Jason Blankenship
    • 1
  • Philip May
    • 1
  • Gill Woodall
    • 1
  1. 1.Center on Alcoholism, Substance Abuse and AddictionsUniversity of New MexicoAlbuquerqueUSA

Personalised recommendations