Western Bulldogs star Bailey Smith has opened up on his struggles with panic attacks in a wide-ranging interview about mental health.
The 20-year-old has emerged as one of the AFL's most high-profile players on the back of an extraordinary finals series.
Smith's talent is matched off the field, racking up more than 335,000 followers on Instagram - second only in the AFL to Dustin Martin - with his popularity and marketability transcending football.
In a podcast called Common Chaos, the midfielder admitted he has had to manage his mental health from an early age.
Current AFL players have spoken about their struggles in the past, but rarely has someone so young detailed their experiences in such a frank way.
"Something that's been helping me recently when I'm having panic attacks, or just having a down day, is the sun will rise tomorrow," Smith told hosts Cartia Mallan and Ashton Wood.
"I started taking medication, that's something I didn't do for such a long time because I didn't want to be weak.
"I just had this weird thing in my head where I wanted to do it myself and it'd be so much more rewarding if I get through it and I don't need medication.
"I bit the bullet and understood and accepted that I wasn't right at the time, I wasn't well.
"It opened up so many doors for me, in terms of school, my education went through the roof and then football.
"I think I was 15, it's pretty young, but I started being really in tune with how I'm feeling and why am I feeling this way.
"I was lucky just because my mum was good at helping me do that, because at the time she was obviously a lot more emotionally intelligent, and still is.
"In terms of wanting to be successful, it just helps you with whatever you want to do."
After the Bulldogs' grand final loss to Melbourne in Perth last month, Smith has been spending his off-season in Queensland.
Taken at pick seven in the 2018 draft, Smith has played all 67 games since debut and kicked 34 goals.
Lifeline 13 11 14
beyondblue 1300 22 4636
Australian Associated Press