Give a child a TOY not a ticket

Lottery tickets are not suitable gifts for children under 18.

Source: Oregon Problem Gambling Resource

As you shop for gifts for children for birthdays, holidays, and other occasions; experts advise against giving lottery tickets to children. 

Due to an abundance of gambling-like games, children today may be introduced to gambling at a young age. Research shows that the earlier a person’s participation or exposure to gambling, the more likely they are to develop a gambling problem later in life (National Council on Problem Gambling).

Tips for talking to your kids about the risks of gambling:

  • Start Early – Don’t wait until adolescence to talk about gambling or other risky behaviors.
  • Listen – Create an open environment for conversation about their lives. Start by asking them, “so what are kids gambling on these days?”
  • Educate yourself and your kids about gambling – Share with kids that gambling isn’t risk free. It’s not a “healthy alternative” to alcohol or drug use.
  • Look for opportunities to discuss the risks of gambling – When there is a news report of a jackpot win, talk about the odds and reality of winning. It’s great math practice!
  • Monitor your child’s activities – Know where your kids are. Know their friends and what they are doing. Don’t forget about their online and video game activity.
  • Keep talking – Like alcohol and drugs, it isn’t one conversation that does the trick. Bring it up in casual conversation and keep talking.
  • Live by example – Remember that kids are watching what adults are doing.


If you (or someone you know) are gambling too much, you can call the Oregon Problem Gambling Helpline and speak to a certified gambling counselor. All information shared is confidential and this service is free to Oregon residents. Call the Helpline 1-877-695-4648 or text 503-713-6000.

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