Mental Health Awareness: Suicide Prevention
By Chelsea Bullock, Miss S.C. Sweet Potato Festival
This week’s Mental Health Month (MHM) topic is Suicide Prevention. You can make a difference and help fight the “Silent Epidemic” of suicide. On average:
• A resident of SC kills themselves every 16.8 hours.
• On any given day in SC an average of 5 of our citizens attempt to kill themselves.
• Suicide is the 11th leading cause of death in both SC and in the nation as a whole.
• Suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death for people aged 18 to 24.
• For every 3 deaths by homicide in SC there are nearly 5 deaths as a result of suicide.
Here is a list of things you can do in your own community to make a difference:
• Educate yourself about the magnitude of the problem, the signs of concern and the tools of prevention
• Encourage your school, jobs and civic organizations to incorporate suicide prevention programs into their guidance or health/wellness programs.
• Encourage your school or organizations to hold a suicide prevention week.
• Watch, listen and pay attention to your fellow citizen to sudden changes in behavior that cause your concern.
Four out of five people give clear warning signs. They include but limited to the following:
• Talking about suicide
• Making statements about feeling hopeless, helpless, or worthless
• A deepening depression
• Preoccupation with death
• Taking unnecessary risks or exhibiting self-destructive behavior
• Out of character behavior
• A loss of interest in the things one cares about
• Giving prized possessions away
• Making arrangements, settings one’s affairs in order
• Visiting or calling people one cares about
Save the Date: Saturday, May 7th at 8:00 a.m. join The Jonathan Foundation in its 5th Annual Run For Brighter Days at 2200 Pocket Road Dargan’s Pond Florence, SC.
To learn more about suicide prevention, effects, treatments and statistics visit: www.jasonfoundation.com; www.sptsusa.org; www.yspp.org; www.mentalhealthamerica.com; www.nami.org; www.samhsa.gov; and www.ffcmh.org.