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Gambling can be an addiction

Each year, Americans lose roughly $100 billion to gambling. That’s right. Billion — with a “b.”

Along with this very lucrative business comes the issue of gambling addiction and Mississippi is not immune to the problem, due mainly to the number of established casinos in the state.

According to a recent analysis from the personal finance online website WalletHub, Mississippi ranks first in the nation in the percentage of adults with gambling disorders and third overall in the number of addicted gamblers, just behind Nevada at No. 1, followed by South Dakota.

Whether we like it or not, gambling is something that is here to stay in the Magnolia State, but it’s up to us to assist those who have a gambling addiction.

Compulsive gambling costs an estimated $6 billion annually and most addicts have several issues they must deal with. Most do not have adequate resources to pay back what they owe. As a result, gambling addicts develop a high tendency to amass even more debt, suffer from other health issues, lose their jobs, strain their relationships or even commit other crimes.

If you know of someone who may have an issue, call the Mississippi Council on Problem and Compulsive Gambling help line at 1-888-777-9696.