For some Powerball players, those odds seem within reach - an unlikely delusion that some doctors say is a new sickness, Correspondent Manuel Ramos of CBS station KPIX-TV in San Francisco reports.
"I bought $150 worth," one woman said.
About 90 percent of all adults in California have bought lotto tickets at one time or another, each spending $2 average on tickets.
Doctors say that lotteries are creating a class of addicts that are similar to hard-core gamblers. They have given lotto fever a medical name: "Lottery Fantasy Syndrome."
"Instead of living today, you live on dreams and hopes," said psychiatrist Dr. Carla Perez.
Perez and other experts agree that betting on Powerball is a true addiction that sucks people into lying, overspending, and fantasizing.
Experts say there are several obvious effects of the syndrome, including:
- Spending more than $10 per game
- Daydreaming about winnings
- Feeling that winning the lottery is the only way to change your life
- Feeling that playing is no longer fun, but a chore