Suicide Prevention

Each year World Suicide Prevention Month is in September. This is a time where we share resources and our stories to help spread awareness and show that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. It is important to bring awareness not only during this month, but also any day to help someone who is struggling with suicide.

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, especially among those who are adults aging from 45 – 65 years old. Suicide can affect anyone from any age group, gender, or background. It is crucial to understand the issues and factors of suicide and mental health because it is an important way to help others and take part in suicide prevention.

We can all play a part in preventing suicide by just being aware, especially if there are some risks involved. Risk factors are characteristics that increase the chance of an individual that may attempt or take their life by suicide. Some risk factors can be based off of the individual’s health, their history and/or environmental factors. The risk factors of suicide include:

-Some mental disorders (mood disorders, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders, and certain personality disorders)
-Alcohol and other substance use disorders
-Hopelessness
-Lack of social support and sense of isolation
-Impulsive and/or aggressive tendencies
-History of trauma or abuse
-Major physical illnesses
-Previous suicide attempt(s)
-Family history of suicide
-Job or financial loss
-Easy access to lethal means
-Local clusters of suicide
-Exposure to others who have died by suicide (in real life or via the media and Internet)
-Stigma associated with asking for help
-Lack of healthcare, especially mental health and substance abuse treatment
-Cultural and religious beliefs, such as the belief that suicide is a noble resolution of a personal dilemma

To determine if someone you know is at risk for suicide, some warning signs may be present, especially if there are risk factors involved. Warning signs can take form in how the person communicates, their behavior, and/or their mood. The warning signs of suicide include:

-Talking about wanting kill themselves
-Seeking ways to kill themselves
-Talking about feeling hopeless
-Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain
-Talking about being a burden to others
-Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs
-Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly
-Sleeping too little or too much
-Withdrawing or isolating themselves
-Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge
-Extreme mood swings

If you’re thinking about suicide, have attempted suicide, or worried about a friend or loved one, please do not hesitate to find help! The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a national network of local crisis centers that provides free and confidential emotional support 24/7. It can be reached at 1-800-273-8255. Also, the therapists at Olive Branch are ALWAYS ready to help and give their support, just contact us to make an appointment at (708)-633-8000.

 

-Marram Salman

 

References:
1.American Foundation for Suicide Prevention https://afsp.org/
2.National Suicide Prevention Lifeline https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/

 

 

 

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