MIDDLETOWN, PA — In observance of National Problem Gambling Awareness Month, the Pennsylvania Lottery is reminding players and their families to recognize the warning signs of a gambling problem and to call 1-800-GAMBLER (1-800-426-2537) or visit www.pacouncil.com for free, confidential help.
These resources, which include an online 24-hour chat service, are operated by the Council on Compulsive Gambling of Pennsylvania, which is funded by the Pennsylvania Lottery.
“We want to make sure that all of our players always play responsibly. That means playing within your financial means and only for entertainment,” said Pennsylvania Lottery Executive Director Drew Svitko. “If you or someone you care about has a gambling problem, we want to make sure that you find the help that you need.”
Gambling can be considered problematic when it causes financial hardship, harms relationships with friends or loved ones, interferes with work, school or other activities, or impacts physical or mental health.
Warning signs of a compulsive gambling problem include a growing preoccupation with gambling, a need to bet more money more frequently, “chasing” losses, restlessness or irritability when trying to stop, and an inability to stop despite negative consequences. Other warning signs include trying to hide or lying about gambling, using gambling as an escape and feeling angry or depressed after gambling.
“We know that gambling addiction is a real concern, so for some people that means not playing at all,” Svitko added. “Because our players must be 18 or older, we also strongly discourage adults from giving lottery games to children.”
The Pennsylvania Lottery’s “Please Play Responsibly” message is visible in all aspects of its consumer marketing and advertising; also appearing on items such as game tickets, live televised drawings, media materials, social media and the Lottery’s website.
To learn more about the warning signs of problem gambling and find out about available services, visit the Lottery’s website: Please Play the PA Lottery Responsibly.
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