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Episode 105: Gambling to Escape: Know the Risks

Neva Pryor, the Executive Director of the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey, Inc., (commonly known as 800-GAMBLER) revealed this to Melissa Chalker, host of the award-winning monthly TV program, Aging Insights. You can see Pryor’s interview on this episode, “Gambling to Escape: Know the Risks.” Produced by NJ Foundation for Aging, Aging Insights is being recorded via video conferencing due to the pandemic.

Pryor, who has 20 years of experience in behavioral health, has led the Council since May 2015. She explains that seniors often go on casino bus trips because their spouses, parents or friends have died and they’re looking to fill a void. “A lot of time, it’s not the money – it’s the bet or the lifestyle. You get on the bus and you go to the casino,” she says.

“People escape to gamble. ‘I don’t like what’s going on in my life,’” says Prior. She feels that when people hit age 65, they begin to wonder, “What is my role in life?” “You have to reinvent yourself as you age,” she says, adding that you need to look within to make yourself happy.

Pryor also addresses signs of a gambling problem as well as internet and illegal gambling.

This episode of Aging Insights also marks the debut of “Tips,” featuring Occupational Therapist Dr. Claire Mulry from Kean University discussing coping during COVID-19.

Launched in 2011, Aging Insights is an award-winning, half-hour monthly show that promotes dialogue and provides resources on critical issues for older adults and caregivers. Episode 105, “Gambling to Escape: Know the Risks,” can also be viewed on NJFA’s website at https://www.njfoundationforaging.org/… and more than 70 public-access stations across NJ (check local listings for channels and times).

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