Tomorrow’s Camping World Kickoff in Orlando will start of the college football season with one of the nation’s most heated rivalry games: the Florida Gators vs. the Miami Hurricanes. Thousands of fans from around Florida and beyond will gather to cheer their alma mater, and the stands will be painted orange, blue, and green.
But no matter how spirited, attendees and those following the game from afar should be careful not to turn their fervor into a sports betting fantasy. Great dangers come with exposure to and participation in illegal sports betting for those who may be suffering from gambling addiction. That’s right – sports betting is still illegal in Florida, and although playing Fantasy Football is legal, the risks for problem gamblers remain.
While most can enjoy gambling as a form of recreation, those who suffer from problem gambling often cannot enjoy the game without urges to place bets, leading to a plethora of consequences which can affect nearly every area of one’s life. Financial setbacks resulting from gambling losses can lead to lies to family, friends, and employers. To make matters worse, problem gamblers who have suffered a substantial loss will often chase losses and continue gambling as a means of “breaking even.” These are just some of the signs of an unsustainable cycle which can continue for months or even years without detection by loved ones, due to the lack of physical symptoms for this “hidden addiction.”
Regardless of Your Alma Mater, Florida’s Problem Gambling HelpLine is Always Available
The Camping World Kickoff is just the beginning of what can be a long NCAA football season for someone suffering from problem gambling. If you or someone you know cannot control urges to gamble, it is important to reach out for help now.
Regardless of race, culture, age, income, or team affiliation, gambling addiction does not discriminate, and neither does Florida’s Problem Gambling HelpLine, 888-ADMIT-IT (236-4848). It’s completely confidential, multilingual, and available to loved ones as well. The HelpLine is also available via text at 321-978-0555, LiveChat on gamblinghelp.org, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by messaging the FCCG’s Facebook and Twitter pages.