First things first, playing any lottery game requires a risk. That's why you should only play with disposable income. In other words, don't bet this month's rent on a scratcher hoping you'll be able to afford a vacation. Stuff like that only happens in the movies, so let's get real.

The truth about lottery scratch off tickets is the odds for each game are posted right on the ticket. How do lottery officials know? Well, they know how many tickets were printed and how many of those tickets are winners. It's basic math from that point.

But there are a few theories that some people who claim lottery success seem to standby when it comes to choosing games that will offer a return on your investment. The folks at Wiki-How have their theories, some of mine and some of theirs are actually pretty similar. So, go check out their thoughts too.

First, lottery tickets like slot machines want to attract high money players. So you're likely to find your best odds of winning by playing some of the pricier tickets. But remember, you also lose more when you don't win so there is a trade-off.

The lower-priced tickets usually offer some of the worst odds of winning but if you only have a few bucks then taking a chance on a few low priced tickets might work in your favor, but don't expect for that tank of gas and the twelve-pack in your hands to be paid for with your sudden good fortune.

Lottery insiders also suggest you play the newer games first. There's no actual proof from any lottery organization that this happens but if your marketing a new game nothing will draw attention to it like several big winners getting their pictures made with big checks. It only stands to reason but technically this is all hearsay.

The "thin white line theory" is also another non-vetted avenue to find a winner without scratching. If you look at the very top of the ticket near the perforation line and you see a little tiny "white line" think of it as card stock that didn't get printed on, some lottery winners say this is a sign that this ticket is printed differently than the others and it is most likely a winner.

Lottery junkies also say you need to changes your stores and ask questions as often as you can. Each roll of scratchers sent to retail locations only has so many winners on it. So, the chances of a store having multiple big winners on the same game are pretty small. These "experts" also suggest you talk to store clerks and ask them what games have been hitting. Those clerks payout most of the prizes and they usually offer the information willingly.

One more thing, those losing tickets should not be thrown away. Now, the store clerks are going to hate me for this one but you really should save all of your losing tickets. Then when you do have a winner bring in the losers to have them scanned as well. It's possible you could have misread the ticket. I know, I almost threw away a $10 winner.

Oh, and many lottery games have second chance drawings where your losing tickets are your entry into the contest for other great prizes. In Louisiana, a lot of the Saints Lottery Tickets offer incentives like that.

By the way, I am not writing this from my mansion high in the hills of Jamaica, so take my free advice for what it's worth. I haven't hit it big on the lottery, ever. But I play for fun and hope someday to have a tank of gas and twelve-pack paid for by the state. I am still waiting for that dream to come true.

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