How to Prevent Suicide in the Modern World.

How to Prevent Suicide in the Modern World.

Given that you are reading this, it is probable that you are aware of the profound sadness that suicide loss leaves in its path and the fact that it is frequently the outcome of unbearable suffering.

Even the most luminous people have tried suicide and passed away from it, we know as behavioral health professionals, worried family members, and friends. We can recall names and faces while others can just recollect numbers.

It’s critical that we evaluate the suicide epidemic during this National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month and take a minute to review the straightforward and sometimes forgotten steps we can take to assist individuals who are at risk of suicide.

Where Does Suicide Stand Right Now?

A major cause of death still is suicide.

Approximately twice as many people reported having severe suicidal thoughts in June 2020 as they did before the epidemic, according to studies from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Despite some predictions to the contrary, the pandemic did not result in a major rise in successfully committed suicides, although rates are still high. 45,979 suicide deaths were recorded in the most current full-year figures for 2020.

Suicide affects some people more than others.

Suicide was also shown by the CDC to be the second-leading cause of mortality in both the 10–14 and 25–34 age groups. Additionally, 1.2 million Americans attempted suicide, with rates among American Indian/Alaska Natives and those over 85 years old being the highest.

Cultural forces make the problem worse

An already stretched mental health crisis was made worse by the pandemic, which added new pressures to mental health problems. It is nevertheless fueled by a number of problems, including young people’s social media-influenced feelings of inadequacy, rising drug misuse rates, financial hardship brought on by inflation, and a more polarising political environment.

Abuse of drugs is a major factor

September is National Recovery Month, which is appropriate. The number of Americans over the age of 12 who had a drug use problem in the previous year was 40.3 million in 2020. The area of behavioral health still struggles with capacity.

Resources are still not keeping up with the demand for mental health treatment. Numerous mental health professionals who switched to Telebehavioral health during the epidemic do not want to return to their regular offices. Many providers would want to avoid having to pay the increased rent and other fees associated with keeping an office. Members who prefer to see a clinician in person may encounter a scarcity even if these professionals are still accessible via Telebehavioral health.

Mental illness remains a taboo subject.

Although there are differences across various communities, stigma related to mental health and suicide thoughts still affects many. We are, however, observing some improvement, particularly among the younger generations who are beginning to recognize the importance and requirement of care that is focused on mental health. The launch of the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline is a huge success that also indicates a sea change in popular perceptions of suicide prevention.

What’s the Next Step for Us?

How can mental health professionals, worried loved ones, and friends, and the suicide rate be reduced? First, let’s go through the fundamentals once more:

Eliminate the stigma by considering suicide a public health emergency.

Public education and advocacy are key components of effective public health initiatives. Every primary care appointment has to include screening for depression and suicidal thoughts, as we must continue to promote. Education is essential, which is significant. This involves facilitating simple access to informative resources for friends and family members who want to assist persons who are experiencing mental anguish.

Recognize the suicide red flags

A few warning signals to look out for include indifference, protracted melancholy, and an unexpected impulse to part with priceless belongings. People who are going through a crisis—such as the loss of a loved one, the end of a relationship, the loss of a career, or a substantial financial loss—are also more likely to develop depression, and consequently, suicidal ideation.

Get in touch and provide assistance

Never be hesitant to ask someone how they are feeling, if something is wrong, or to let them know that you have observed they are not acting like themselves. then pay attention without passing judgment. You may support someone who is thinking about suicide by volunteering to go with them to a provider appointment, to be with them while they contact the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, or even by calling 988 yourself to request assistance for someone else who is in crisis. When a loved one needs help, never undervalue the importance of being there.