(Xinhuanet/Agencies) Impulsive kids are more prone to start gambling in their Kindergarten than less impulsive children, Canadian researchers said.

The researchers said Monday children rated as impulsive by their kindergarten teachers appear more likely to begin playing cards or placing bets before they hit middle school.

Linda Pagani, who led the study at Sainte-Justine University Hospital Research Center and the Universite de Montreal, said the research in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine is the first to show gambling among children this young.

‘The question has always been, ‘What comes before adolescent gambling?” Pagani said in a telephone interview.

Kindergarten teachers for 163 students were asked to complete a questionnaire at the beginning of the school year to rank the children’s inattentiveness, distractibility and hyperactivity.

Six years later, at an average age of 11.5, the children told the researchers in telephone interviews how often they participated in gambling-related behaviors such as playing cards or bingo, buying lottery tickets, playing video games or video poker for money or placing bets at sporting events or with friends.

After controlling for factors like family composition, parents’ education and household income, the researchers found an increase of one unit on the impulsivity scale in kindergarten corresponded to a 25 percent increase in gambling involvement by the sixth grade.

People who start gambling in adolescence are more likely to have severe gambling problems in adulthood, Pagani said.