Battling online gambling addictions

Battling online gambling addictions


HAVING ONE UNITED PARADE. IT IS CALLED THE HIDDEN ADDICTION. GAMBLING. WHETHER IT’S ON YOUR LAPTOP OR AT A CASINO, THE ACCESS IS THERE. AS LAUREN FEEMAN REPORTS, THAT EASY ACCESS IS ADDICTING A MUCH YOUNGER GENERATION OF GAMBLERS. I LOST MY MARRIAGE. I LOST MY JOB. MY CAR. I DIDN’T HAVE A PLACE TO LIVE. Reporter: ALAN SAYS HE’S BEEN A COMPULSIVE GAMBLER FOR DECADES. I NEED TO DO HAVE ACTION ALL THE TIME. I HAD A HARD TIME FOCUSING ON JUST NORMAL LIFE. GAMBLING WAS TURNING TO BE MORE IMPORTANT TO ME THAN ANYTHING ELSE. Reporter: ALAN’S GAME OFh CHOICE? BLACK JACK. NOW SPORTS BETTING. BETTING ON SPORTS TYPICALLY STARTS YOUNG. JENNIFER CRUZ WORKS WITH COLLEGE AGE COMPULSIVE GAMBLERS. THE COLLEGE POPULATION, YOU’VE GOT KIDS WHO ARE AT A TIME IN THEIR LIVES WHERE ALL OF A SUDDEN, THEY’RE BECOMING AN ADULT AND THEY’VE GOT ACCESS TO CREDIT THAT THEY NEVER HAD BEFORE. THEY’VE GOT INDEPENDENCE AND FREEDOM AND THEY’RE EXPLORING THINGS. Reporter: YOUR IN FIVE COLLEGE STUDENTS SAT RISK OR DEVELOPED AN ADDICTION. WITH ONLINE OPTIONS FOR GAMBLING LIKE DRAFT KINGS, FULL TILT, BECOMING MORE POPULAR, PROBLEM GAMBLING IS ONLY GOING TO GET WORSE. 44% OF CALLERS STATED THAT THEY STARTED GAMBLING BEFORE AGE OF 25. THE MONEY IS THERE. YOU PICK THE RIGHT TEAM, THEN YOU CAN WIN A LOT OF MONEY. Reporter: AND SPOTTING A GAMBLING ADDICT ISN’T EASY. CRUZ SAYS THERE AREN’T ANY TELL TALE SIGNS. YOU CAN’T LOOK AT SOMEONE AND SAY, OH, THEY HAVE DICE EYE OR THEY HAVE ROULETTE BREATH OR CARD MARKS ON THEIR ARMS. THERE IS NO SIGN. IT CAN GO FOR MANY, MANY MONTHS AND YEARS. I WAS ABLE TO HIDE IT FROM MANY PEOPLE. IT’S LIKE LIVING TWO LIVES. FOR ME IT WAS A JEKYL AND HYDE LIFESTYLE. Reporter: ADDICTS LIKE ALAN USUALLY HAVE TO SEEK TREATMENT ON THEIR OWN. KNOWING THE WARNING SIGNS OF A COMPULSIVE DISORDER CAN HELP AN ADDICT MAKE THE DECISION. THINGS LIKE CONSTANT THOUGHTS ABOUT GAMBLING, INCREASING BETS TO SUSTAIN THE THRILL, AND CHASING LOSSES. HE GOT HELP AND IS NOW ONE OF THE LUCKY ONES. ONE IN FIVE COMPULSIVE GAMBLERS WILL ATTEMPT SUICIDE. COMPULSIVE GAMBLERS IS NEVER CURED. RECOVERY IS EVERY DAY, ONE DAY AT A TIME. Reporter: SENIORS ARE A GROWING POPULATION SEEING MORE PROBLEM COMPULSIVE GAMBLERS. THERE IS A 24 HOUR HOT LINE FOR ANYONE WHO WANTS TO GET HELP.

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