Jackass star Chris Raab has been opening up about the toll the cult MTV series has taken on him physically and mentally.

Raab, better known by his Jackass moniker Raab Himself, revealed that the injuries and pain caused by the stunts he did as well as the fame that came with the series drove him into an addiction to painkillers, cocaine and booze.

"If you got hurt, you were like, 'Oh, I can just take a pill for that.' And you justify it's a painkiller, I'm in pain. I broke my ankle. I need this," he told PageSix.com.

"And then you justify it to yourself if you broke your arm, you'd need [another painkiller] too. And before you know it, you're just so caught up in it."

Advertisement

Jackass - that also made household names of Johnny Knoxville, Steve-O and Bam Margera - was a reality show that revolved around featuring people doing stunts and pranks that often left people injured, reports Daily Mail.

In fact, the show featured highly visible disclaimers and warnings to viewers not to try and imitate the dangerous stunts.

However, it was wildly popular and gained a cult following.

Raab starred on Jackass for three seasons from 2000 to 2002 and in the 2002 Jackass: The Movie.

Cast members of 'Jackass: The Movie' during the Premiere at Cinerama Dome in Hollywood, California. Chris Raab is centre in the yellow shirt. Photo / Getty
Cast members of 'Jackass: The Movie' during the Premiere at Cinerama Dome in Hollywood, California. Chris Raab is centre in the yellow shirt. Photo / Getty

Now 37, he recalls: "I did a lot of cocaine and I drank my ass off pretty much seven days a week..... I didn't realize how much I became a slave to drugs and alcohol."

The addiction got so bad that he decided not to continue with the format he'd helped create and did not participate in two subsequent Jackass films.

"I got darker into drugs and drinking and wanting to be alone. I'd end up alone in my condo just doing drugs and drinking and just not wanting to be around anybody," he explained, adding he'd been left suicidal as a result of his addictions.

Raab has now turned his life around and is celebrating eight years of sobriety.