Brief Biosocial Gambling Screen (BBGS)

| August 27, 2016

Brief Biosocial Gambling Screen for Problem Gambling

Having a hard time getting enough space for gambling questions on your assessments?
Try the Brief Biosocial Gambling Screen tool, a three-question tool for RULING OUT disordered  gambling.

The Brief Biosocial Gambling Screen (BBGS) was developed by the Division on Addiction, Cambridge Health Alliance at Harvard Medical School, to help screen for gambling disorders. While developed initially based upon research of the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) criteria for pathological gambling (1), the screen was more recently validated for the DSM-5 criteria for disordered gambling (2).

The BBGS questions:

  • During the past 12 months, have you become restless irritable or anxious when trying to stop/cut down on gambling?
  • During the past 12 months, have you tried to keep your family or friends from knowing how much you gambled?
  • During the past 12 months did you have such financial trouble as a result of your gambling that you had to get help with living expenses from family, friends or welfare?

A “yes” response to any single item indicates potential gambling-related problems and the need for additional evaluation. Get the electronic version of the BBGS at the Division on Addictions website.


Division on Addictions, Cambridge Health Alliance, Harvard Medical School 

2. Brett, E. I., Weinstock, J., Burton, S. Wenzel, K. R., Weber, S., & Moran, S. (2014). Do the DSM-5 diagnostic revisions affect the psychometric properties of the Brief Biosocial Gambling Screen? International Gambling Studies, 14(3), 447-456.

Category: Community Resources, Problem Gambling

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