When is National Suicide Prevention Month, why it's important

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline released information regarding National Suicide Prevention month – which is September.

1. When is National Suicide Prevention Day?

World Suicide Prevention Day is September 10. It’s a time to remember those affected by suicide, to raise awareness, and to focus efforts on directing treatment to those who need it most. All throughout the month of September, mental health advocates, prevention organizations, survivors, allies, and community members unite to promote suicide prevention awareness.

2. What is the message for this year?

#BeThe1To is the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline’s message for National Suicide Prevention Month and beyond, which helps spread the word about actions we can all take to prevent suicide. The Lifeline network and its partners are working to change the conversation from suicide to suicide prevention, to actions that can promote healing, help and give hope.

3. What are the risk factors of someone struggling with suicide?

Risk factors are characteristics that make it more likely that someone will consider, attempt, or die by suicide. They can't cause or predict a suicide attempt, but they're important to be aware of. Some of the risk factors include mental disorders; alcohol and other substance abuse; history of trauma or abuse; major physical illness; family history of suicide; job or financial loss; relationship loss; and hopelessness.

4. What are the warning signs of someone struggling with suicidal thoughts?

Signs of someone at risk of committing suicide include talking about wanting to die; looking for ways to kill themselves; talking about feeling hopeless, trapped or feeling like a burden; increased use of alcohol or drugs; sleeping too much or too little; isolation; and showing rage or extreme mood swings.

5. What are some tips to help someone struggling with suicidal thoughts?

• Ask – Research shows people who are having thoughts of suicide feel relief when someone asks after them in a caring way. Findings suggest acknowledging and talking about suicide may reduce rather than increase suicidal ideation.

• Be There – Individuals are more likely to feel less depressed, less suicidal, less overwhelmed, and more hopeful by after speaking to someone who listens without judgment.

• Keep Them Safe – A number of studies have indicated that when lethal means are made less available or less deadly, suicide rates by that method decline, and frequently suicide rates overall decline.

• Help Them Stay Connected – Studies indicate that helping someone at risk create a network of resources and individuals for support and safety can help them take positive action and reduce feelings of hopelessness.

• Follow Up – Studies have also shown that brief, low cost intervention and supportive, ongoing contact may be an important part of suicide prevention, especially for individuals after they have been discharged from hospitals or care services.

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