Did you know that 1 in every 100 deaths around the world is a result of suicide? Every death caused by suicide has a ripple effect of devastation and a deep impact on the people around them. The COVID-19 pandemic has contributed to increased feelings of isolation and vulnerability and, as hard as the subject is to talk about, it is a conversation that needs to happen.
SEPTEMBER 10TH: WORLD SUICIDE PREVENTION DAY
World Suicide Prevention Day is an opportunity to raise awareness of suicide and ‘Create Hope Through Action’—a message that reminds us all that even the smallest kind gesture or conversation with someone you suspect may be battling depression can ignite hope and light in a person who may be going through a very dark moment.
Suicidal thoughts are complex: There is no one size fits all diagnosis or causes as to why a person may be feeling suicidal, though we do know that certain factors, such as traumatic life events, may make a person more susceptible to suicide and mental health conditions like depression and anxiety.
Reach out: Often, suicidal people may feel like there is no other option, that they are alone or a burden to their friends and family. Just by simply showing someone that you care can make a world of difference. If you suspect someone is struggling with suicidal thoughts or depression, reach out and ask. Make the time and space. You don’t need to tell them what to do, but just show that you care and listen.
Encourage understanding: Stigma is a major barrier to people struggling to seek help. All of us can play a part in helping change the narrative around suicide through the promotion of hope and creating a more compassionate society where those in need feel more comfortable in coming forward to seek help.
Share experiences: By sharing your insights and personal experiences with suicide or suicidal thoughts, you can help others better understand it, and encourage those struggling to ask for help. Remember that if you wish to share your story with someone, do so in a safe space.
Suicide prevention resources:
- For suicide prevention resources, visit the Suicide Prevention Resource Center.
- To learn more about suicide warning signs, risk factors, and treatments, visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.
If you know someone in crisis:
- Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (Lifeline) at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or text the Crisis Text Line (text HELLO to 741741). Both services are free and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. All calls are confidential. Contact social media outlets directly if you are concerned about a friend’s social media updates or dial 911 in an emergency. Learn more on Lifeline’s website or the Crisis Text Line’s website.
- The Veterans Crisis Line connects Service members and Veterans in crisis, as well as their family members and friends, with qualified Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA) responders through a confidential toll-free hotline, online chat, or text messaging service. Dial 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1 to talk to someone or send a text message to 838255 to connect with a VA responder. You can also start a confidential online chat session at Veterans Crisis Chat.
As part of our mission for better care, Abarca goes all in to raise awareness on suicide prevention to help reduce the stigma around mental health and encourage well-informed action that can help save lives and reduce instances of suicide globally.
*This blog post was written by Ana Rivera, Clinical Program Manager at Abarca Health.