ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Analysts predict a record amount of money will be bet on the Super Bowl this year. While many gamble responsibly, others might develop some problems.
NEWS10 talked to the New York state Office of Addiction Services and Support (OSAS) about the risk factors to look out for and how the office plans to address problem gambling.
New York has the largest market for sports betting, population wise. But with the burgeoning industry comes problems, according to Dr. Chinazo Cunningham, who is the commissioner of the OSAS.
“The hallmark for addiction really for anything, any behavior or any substance, is continued use or continued behaviors despite the negative consequences and then also losing control,” said Cunningham.
Cunnigham said risk factors to look out for include, continuing to bet despite losses, inability to fulfill daily responsibilities and she said those at highest risk are young men, often in their early 20s. And there’s one more thing to consider with many Super Bowl parties happening on Sunday.
“We know that when people are drinking alcohol or using drugs that they’re also more likely to have problem gambling. And so limiting any substance use as well as limiting the dollar amount, and the amount of time spent gambling are really harm reduction strategies to reduce the risk of developing a problem,” said Cunningham.
Congressman Paul Tonko said in many ways this new industry targets young people and has proposed legislation to address it, the Betting on our Future Act.
“It’s frightening and there’s a lot of buy-in, and people see revenues or whatever, but they also have to see the human suffering and the pain that will come from betting and we need to make sure certain that the services are there too if we are going to continue this,” said Tonko.
If you find you may need help, that’s also available 24/7 at 1-877-8-HOPENY (467369).