Monday, September 25, 2017

Suicide Awareness and Prevention

September is Suicide Prevention Month. Every 15 minutes someone in the United States takes his or her own life. And for every one suicide, there are 25 attempts. Suicide takes life without regard to age, income, education, social standing, race, or gender. Overall, suicide is the 10th leading cause of death for all Americans. The legacy of suicide continues long after the death, impacting bereaved loved ones and communities. Fortunately, there is strong evidence that a comprehensive public health approach is effective in reducing suicide rates. In fact, suicide rates have been declining among both American youth and elders for well over a decade, two groups on which the nation has focused most. It’s important to know the warning signs that help identify an individual who may be at immediate risk of taking their own life. For example, an individual may reveal the following information: • Talk of wanting to hurt or kill oneself • Unusual contemplation of death, dying, or suicide • Feelings of being trapped—like there’s no way out • Feelings of hopelessness or that there is no purpose in life • Withdrawal from friends, family, and society People at risk of suicide may also present with: • Increased alcohol or substance use • Anxiety/agitation • Rage/uncontrolled anger • Trouble sleeping or sleeping all the time • Dramatic mood changes, including sudden elevation in mood Half the population reports they have been touched by suicide. And, one out of three people say it has had a high impact on their lives. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides 24/7 free confidential support for people in distress, prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved one, and resources for professionals. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline # is 1-

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