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EastEnders: Isaac speaks to Lola about his Schizophrenia

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Already a father to sons Weston, 31, oxycontin vs roxicet and 16-year-old Kal-El (from two different relationships), this isn’t the actor’s first rodeo. Now a dad to August Francesca Coppola Cage, he may be reminded of his own upbringing. Born in Long Beach, California, on January 7, 1964, Nicolas’s parents might not have envisioned how successful their son would become. His dad, August, was a comparative literature professor, while his mother, Joy Vogelsang, was a dancer and choreographer.

Passing away in June 2021, Cage opened up about his mum’s troubles with her mental health.

Cage shared: “She was plagued with mental illness for most of my childhood.

“She was institutionalised for years and went through shock treatments.

“She would go into these states that lasted for years. She went through these episodes of poetry – I don’t know what else to call it.

“As it may be prevented through the use of antipsychotic medicines and extra support.”

While schizophrenia “had some impact” on Nicolas, he added: “For me, acting was a way of taking destructive energy and doing something productive with it.

“Instead of turning it on myself or on somebody else, I put it on film and created characters to express anger or express sadness.”

Nicolas Cage stars in Windtalkers, which airs on ITV4 at 9pm on Monday, September 12.

“She would say the most amazing things, beautiful but scary. I’m sure they had an impact on me.”

Described as the “hardest part” of his childhood, Cage recalled that he was “quite young” when he visited his mum in the “institutions”.

“There was a long hallway we had to walk down to see Mum, past people grabbing at us,” he recalled.

“At the end of it, she was always there, sitting, waiting… She never wanted to hurt anybody. The hardest part was seeing someone I love suffer.”

Cage’s mother was diagnosed with schizophrenia to describe her ongoing mental health symptoms.

What is schizophrenia?

The NHS says schizophrenia is a “severe, long-term mental health condition”.

Symptoms can range from auditory and visual hallucinations to delusions, which is when a person has “unusual beliefs not based on reality”.

Schizophrenia can also lead to “muddled thoughts based on hallucinations or delusions”.

Schizophrenia symptoms

  • Losing interest in everyday activities
  • Not caring about your personal hygiene
  • Wanting to avoid people, including friends.

Treatment can include a combination of medications and individual therapy.

To get ahead of an “episode”, milder symptoms to spot can include:

  • Feeling suspicious or fearful
  • Worrying about people’s motives
  • Hearing quiet voices now and again
  • Finding it difficult to concentrate.

“Recognising the initial signs of an acute schizophrenic episode can be useful,” the NHS states.

“As it may be prevented through the use of antipsychotic medicines and extra support.”

While schizophrenia “had some impact” on Nicolas, he added: “For me, acting was a way of taking destructive energy and doing something productive with it.

“Instead of turning it on myself or on somebody else, I put it on film and created characters to express anger or express sadness.”

Nicolas Cage stars in Windtalkers, which airs on ITV4 at 9pm on Monday, September 12.

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