- “Euphoria” cast member Angus Cloud died on July 31 at age 25.
- On September 21, the coroner reportedly found that the actor died from an accidental overdose.
- Cloud’s mother recently said she did not believe her son intentionally took his own life.
- His family hoped the late actor’s openness with mental health issues could help others.
Officials have announced the cause of death for “Euphoria” breakout star Angus Cloud, who died at the age of 25.
On September 21, a spokesperson for the Alameda County Coroner told CNN that Cloud died from an accidental overdose due to a “lethal combination” of fentanyl, cocaine, and methamphetamine.
In an earlier statement to E! News, the family had shared that Cloud, who played Fez on the hit HBO series, had lost his father in May after an illness. The late actor also had a history of mental health issues.
“Angus was open about his battle with mental health and we hope that his passing can be a reminder to others that they are not alone and should not fight this on their own in silence,” the family’s statement said.
In a statement on August 7, his mother, Lisa Cloud, wrote on Facebook that his last day was a “joyous one” and that she does not believe he meant to end his life and may have died from an accidental drug overdose.
“He did not intend to end his life. When we hugged goodnight we said how much we loved each other and he said he would see me in the morning. I don’t know if or what he may have put in his body after that. I only know that he put his head on the desk where he was working on art project’s[sic], fell asleep and didn’t wake up,” she wrote.
Here’s how the death of a loved one can worsen pre-existing mental health issues and lead to the development of new ones.
The finality of death can feel unsettling and frightening and many people feel helpless or powerless.
“Survivors question their own value, life choices, longevity, and purpose,” she said.
People may have just lost an important part of their support system, which can lead to loneliness, and their life routines or daily activities often get disrupted, said Dr. Peter Steen, a psychiatrist and the Vice Chair of Performance Improvement in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at Staten Island University Hospital.
For those who are already struggling with their mental health, the death can make their condition — and, specifically, any issues with their self-esteem, depression, anxiety, and past trauma — feel paralyzing, she added.
Experiencing a death of loved one — and the loss of structure that accompanies it — can exacerbate pre-existing mental health issues or trigger the development of new issues.
“Grief, which is considered a normal response, can morph into clinical conditions such as depression, anxiety, substance use disorders, or other conditions,” said Steen.
The intensity and duration of grief is highly variable and looks different from person to person.
Grief tends to come in waves. For example, people may experience sadness when thinking of their loved one, followed by joy while reflecting about certain positive memories with them.
Depression, on the other hand, tends to be consistently symptomatic, according to Steen.
The sadness tends to be more pervasive, he said.
Steen said he’s treated numerous patients whose mental health took a turn for the worse after the death of a friend or family member.
“Speaking from clinical experience, people presenting to the emergency department for mental health concerns will often site the death of a loved one as being either a remote or recent stressor contributing to their mental health concern,” Steen said.
Suicide prevention lines, which can be reached by dialing 988 on your phone, can be life-saving for those in crisis.
In addition, emergency rooms will always admit and provide support to anyone who is having suicidal thoughts.
It’s also important to have a strong support system, which can come from family members, close friends, therapy, support groups, or even pets.
“Reach out to people who you feel comfortable speaking with or just being with when words don’t feel right,” said Steen.
People based in New York City can also find support group for many conditions and issues on the Health Information Tool for Empowerment’s website.
Kennedy said establishing a routine of some kind can provide structure and anchor the day.
It does not have to be as busy or involved as the routines you had before the death occurred.
Take care of yourself in small ways by, for example, taking a shower, eating, and moving your body.
With suicidal ideation, people may feel hopeless and believe that things will never change, said Steen, but it can be helpful to remember that change is inevitable.
“Your relationship to the grief will change, become a little lighter, and you’ll feel as though you’re going to make it,” Steen said.
On July 31, “Euphoria” actor Angus Cloud died at 25. On September 21, the local coroner reported that the actor had died from an accidental overdose.
Cloud’s mother said in a statement that she does not believe he meant to end his life. Cloud’s father had recently died, and the actor had a history of mental health issues.
Experts say the sudden death of a loved one can worsen or ignite new mental health issues and it’s crucial to reach out for help as soon as possible.