Gambling addiction is a problem in Louisiana and it's not getting better. Experts say it impacts more than 180-thousand people statewide.

Janet Miller is the Director of the Louisiana Association on Compulsive Gambling and she says says gambling addictions in Louisiana were at about the 2-3% mark in 2008, and now the numbers are closer to 8% who say they have a problem.

March is Problem Gambling Awareness Month and Miller encourages anyone affected to call the Problem Gambler’s Helpline at 1-877-770-STOP.

The National Council on Problem Gambling says 7 million people struggle with a gambling addiction, but help is available across the country. Experts say the first step to getting help is to talk about the problem. Counseling is available which can specifically address the issues that result in gambling addictions.

Over the past 10 years, calls to the National Helpline (1-800-522-4700) are expected to jump by about 30% during March.