We assessed gender differences in risk factors and gambling patterns in adolescents.
We found common and specific predictors of gambling severity by gender.
Gambling has been considered a male pastime with research focused on exploring risk factors for gambling without considering gender differences. Despite gambling has greatly increased among women in recent years, few studies have explored gender differences in adolescent gamblers. This study analyzed gender differences in risk factors and gambling-related patterns. The sample comprised 1756 adolescents aged 14 to 17 years. Chi-square and t-tests were performed to examine differences between male and female gamblers (n = 699). Multiple regressions were conducted to explore predictors of gambling severity by gender. Male gamblers reported more gambling activity within the last year and showed a more severe gambling pattern. Impulsivity, last year prevalence of bingo, and other casino games were associated with higher gambling severity in both genders. Enhancement and coping motives were related to gambling severity only in males, while mixed-mode gambling was related to gambling severity in females. Our findings extend the research on gender differences among adolescent gamblers by showing that gender specific risk factors exist and should be regarded by health providers when designing treatment strategies.