Getting Caught in the Madness

Getting Caught in the Madness  

March Madness is Here

In March, we celebrate Problem Gambling Awareness Month, but in the sports world it’s March Madness. March Madness is the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s (NCAA) Division I college basketball championship.  Many people choose to participate as March Madness is exciting and entertaining because there are multiple games to watch and there can be upsets and unpredictability due to the single elimination format.  

Sports Betting During the Games

With the legalization of mobile sports betting in New York, the accessibility to bet on sports is even greater than it used to be. In addition to bracket predictions by sport entertainers and the hype around the games, it is easy to get caught in the madness of gambling on the games. Therefore, it is important to know that if you feel your sports gambling is getting out of control that there is help available.  

Entertainment vs. Problem Gambling

While watching the games are a great form of entertainment, know that for you or a loved one, it could be a problem. Don’t get caught up in the madness. Educate yourself and know the warning signs:  

  • Are you or a loved one haunted by bill collectors? 
  • Is gambling used to escape worry, boredom or trouble? 
  • Do you or a loved one ever gamble longer than originally planned? 
  • Have arguments, disappointments or frustrations caused you or a loved one to gamble? 
  • Do you or a loved one celebrate good times with gambling? 
  • Have you ever hidden the rent/mortgage or food money because your spouse, partner or other family member gambles it away? 
  • Do you or a loved one borrow money to finance gambling or to pay back gambling debts? 
  • Does your spouse, partner or other loved one promise faithfully that she or he will stop gambling, yet continues to gamble? 
  • Have you noticed a personality change in a loved one as his or her gambling has progressed? 

Treatment Works!

If you think you or a loved one may need resources for gambling, the Problem Gambling Resource Centers are here to help. Calling up can be difficult. But not to worry, understanding what resources are available are the first step.  

Are you worried about getting connected to a clinician? You can read the blog post HERE about getting connected.  

Think you may have a problem, but don’t know for sure? Check out the blog post on screening tools HERE 

Do you want to hear success stories of others who have gone through this? Read their stories HERE and know that hope and help are available! 

Whatever you need the Problem Gambling Resource Centers across New York State are here to help. Visit to find your local PGRC and call us today!