Study: Moody Toddlers Could End Up as Compulsive Gamblers

Education Week:

Is your 3-year-old overly cranky, impulsive and restless? If the answer is yes, you could be raising a future gambler.

So says a new study published recently in the journal Psychological Science that found a correlation between so-called “under-controlled” temperament in preschoolers and compulsive gambling later in life.

The study’s researchers say their results suggest it may be possible to determine as early as age 3 whether a person is at increased risk of becoming a gambler, according to psychologist Wendy S. Slutske of the University of Missouri, Columbia.

Slutske conducted the study along with Terrie E. Moffitt and Avshalom Caspi, both of Duke University in Durham, N.C., and University College/London; and Richie Poulton of the University of Otago, in Dunedin, New Zealand, according to a press release from the Association for Psychological Science.

The researchers followed 939 people who were first assessed as toddlers and then at ages 21 and 32 as part of a New Zealand longitudinal health and development study. They were part of a slightly larger group whose temperaments were assessed for 90 minutes at age 3. The more-restless kids who were also impulsive and unable to control their emotions were tagged as having under-controlled temperaments.

Read the whole story: Education Week

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