Although for most of us gambling is an occasional pastime with no significant repercussions, for some it can develop into something infinitely more dangerous.
Experts think problem gambling is a real mental illness that can quickly result in debt, crime, depression and sometimes even suicide.
The most recent national survey looking at gambling habits found that there were around 451,000 problem gamblers in Britain.
Unlike other addictions, such as smoking, drugs and alcohol, gambling has few physical symptoms – making it difficult to spot and treat.
Now the ‘hidden addiction’ will be bought to the nation’s attention tonight with the 20:30 broadcast of BBC Panorama’s programme ‘Gambling Nation’.
In the programme, Panorama speaks with a number of problem gamblers including Keelin Carroll, a mother who developed a gambling problem...