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Ant McPartlin

Ant of Ant & Dec has left rehab and revealed that he almost died after a two-year addiction to painkillers

It all began with a leg injury.

TV ratings Dominic Lipinski Dominic Lipinski

ANT MCPARTLIN IS best known has one half of enthusiastic TV hosting duo Ant and Dec.

The cheerful star, worth £60 million, is one of the last people that anyone ever suspected of secretly struggling with drug and alcohol addiction.

However in June this year, we learned that he was checking himself into rehab after a knee injury escalated into a two-year long addiction to prescription pain medicine.

National Television Awards 2017 - Arrivals - London Matt Crossick Matt Crossick

In his first interview since leaving rehab, Ant said “I was at the point where anything – prescription drugs, non-prescription drugs – I would take.”

He begged to be taken to hospital after a binge on tramadol, morphine and alcohol after recovering from a second knee operation. After this he agreed to go to rehab.

“I was insane. It sends you crazy. It was getting to the point of hearing things, seeing things in the garden and still the pain was getting worse”, Ant told The Sun on Sunday.

Ant is now officially ‘clean of all drugs other than paracetamol for the first time in three years’. He found that the trouble began when he was prescribed highly addictive opium-based pain killers.

Pain killer stock PA Archive / PA Images PA Archive / PA Images / PA Images

Ant was prescibed Tramadol, OxyContin (which was used as a cheap heroin alternative in America in the 1990s), Morphine, Diazepam (commonly known as valium), Sleeping pills, Co-codamol (a codeine and paracetamol based painkiller like Solpadeine) and Codeine.

He also self-prescribed alcohol to help relieve himself during his addiction.

Like many people, Ant didn’t take the warnings on the packets as seriously as he should have.

Sometimes these addictive painkillers cause headaches or other pains, which cause users to exceed the recommended period of usage, because they think taking more painkillers solves the issue.

Before he knew it, he had been abusing the painkillers because he found them relatively easy to get by going to separate private doctors.

Ant McPartlin rehab Ian West Ian West

During his time in rehab, support poured out from other celebs including Simon Cowell who said:

All I can tell you about Ant is he’s one of the most genuine people you’ll ever meet.
He hasn’t changed in all the years I’ve known him. [...] I don’t know the details behind the scenes, but when someone has the courage to own it, deal with it, making a public statement, we would a million per cent support him. I think he’ll be fine.

He remains committed to keeping clean after seeing just how badly painkillers can affect someone.

Ant noted that he’s very lucky to have the means to get himself help and is aware that many other people do not have the opportunities for recovery that he had, so he remains grateful for his lot.

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