Opinion: Scratch-offs, lottery tickets can lead to big losses, addiction Michaela Gibson, Morris (Mississippi) Daily Journal · December 2, 2019 at 11:53 pm It’s just a scratch-off game or a lottery ticket, until it isn’t. For most people, buying a lottery ticket or scratch-off game will be an inexpensive, entertaining lark. They might spend a few minutes day dreaming about what they might buy if they won, but they will move on with their day. But for some it will become a compulsion that leads people to chase the elusive big win. For some people, gambling can be just as addictive as alcohol or drugs. “It still produces a high, even though the chemical may be adrenaline,” said Dody Vail, executive director of the Northeast Mississippi chapter of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. Scratch-off games became available in Mississippi last week, and the multi-state Power Ball and Mega Millions lottery will come online Jan. 30. Now that people can gamble in real life without driving hours to a casino or crossing state lines, recovery advocates are concerned that more Northeast Mississippians could fall into compulsive gambling.