September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. This time of year, through the holidays and the beginning of a new year, are a volatile time for those who struggle with thoughts of suicide. Here’s more information about suicide and how you can help share awareness on vital resources.
Suicide is currently ranked as the 10th leading cause of death in adults in the United States, and SECOND for individuals ages 10-24 years. And sadly, the number is estimated to be higher. The stigma associated with suicide attempts and completions leads to underreporting.
However, at CoolSpeak, we wish to reach out to those who have suffered from the loss of a loved one to suicide, connect those at risk of suicide to the resources they need, and to shed light and bring awareness to this exquisitely sensitive subject. Your story isn’t over. Help reach out and speak up.
What should you do if you or a loved one has suicidal thoughts?
You should realize that these thoughts are not a sign that you or your loved one is damaged or imperfect. Suicidal thoughts are an emergency. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273 TALK (8255) any time of the day or night to speak to a mental health professional. These chats are private and secure, and are for anyone experiencing depression, overwhelming sadness, hopelessness, or contemplating suicide.
What can you do if you’re suffering from the loss of a friend or loved one by suicide?
You can realize that you are not alone. More than 41,000 individuals take their life through suicide every year, leaving behind grieving loved ones, friends, and family members. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention lists suicide survivor support groups, which are a valuable outlet and place for support for those struggling after a loss due to suicide.
How can you offer suicide prevention awareness?
You can spread awareness through social media by sharing suicide prevention resources. You can familiarize yourself with the warning signs of suicidal ideation. If a friend or loved one confides in you that they are feeling suicidal, you should seek the help of a professional by calling 1-800-273 TALK (8255) immediately. Preventing suicide begins with recognizing warning signs and taking them seriously.
Even if your family member or friend is upset with you for reaching out and getting help; it’s ok. You are doing the right thing to care for them… just as a friend should do!
By sharing and not being afraid to discuss suicide, we can lower the rates and reduce the stigma associated with it. Take this opportunity to familiarize yourself with resources and information regarding the warning signs and how you can get help for yourself or a loved one who may be contemplating suicide.
CoolSpeak is a youth motivational company. We believe that everyone has a story that is uniquely your own. Embrace your own unique abilities and struggles as that is what makes you special.