Former Burnley footballer Clarke Carlisle opens up about problem gambling
and live on Freeview channel 276
The 42-year-old is supporting the latest phase of Lancashire and South Cumbria Health and Care Partnership’s Let’s Keep Talking campaign which focuses on problem gambling.
Being a compulsive gambler can harm your health and relationships and leave you in serious debt.
The UK has one of the biggest gambling markets in the world. Problem gambling not only harms the individual, but their families, friends and wider society.
The North West (4.4%) and North East (4.9%) had the highest prevalence of at-risk gamblers.
There is evidence that gambling can be successfully treated in the same way as other addictions. However, if left untreated it can lead to suicide.
“Gambling’s always been my little secret and I don’t know why I coveted it so much. I’ve given up smoking and drinking in the past, but gambling was always the one that I kept.
“Gambling can very quickly spiral and affect many different areas of your life. It’s a never-ending chase of wins and losses: it becomes incredibly draining.
“I’ve been actively suicidal on five occasions in my life, and on four of those occasions gambling was a huge factor that took me to those depths. It becomes all consuming, don’t let it get there.
“There might not always be a quick solution but there is always a solution, let’s break that cycle. Help is out there, please reach out.”
The past two years have been a very difficult time for a lot of people. It is more important than ever for people to reach out if they are struggling with their mental health.
Neil Smith, the Mental Health Multi-Agency Strategic Lead for the Lancashire and South Cumbria Health and Care Partnership, said: “We’re extremely grateful to Clarke for getting behind our campaign. We know his personal experiences will resonate with so many other people – particularly young men.
“Nobody sets out to become a problem gambler, but as Clarke said, we understand things can quickly spiral out of control for some.”
For help and support with problem gambling visit www.healthierlsc.co.uk/gambling.