Published: Sat, June 09, 2018
Life&Culture | By Rose Hansen

What to do if you suspect someone is suicidal

What to do if you suspect someone is suicidal

Suicide has become the 10th leading cause of death in the US, and is one of three leading causes that are on the rise, the CDC said.

They found that suicide rates increased in every state except Nevada over the past two decades; and half of the country (25 states) saw suicide rates rise more than 30%.

The Minnesota Health Department has increased efforts to identify at-risk communities to help reduce suicides.

Suicide is a major public health issue, accounting for almost 45,000 deaths in 2016 alone.

The report said people without known mental health problems were more likely to die by firearms than those with known mental health problems. And suicidal ideation can arise from a plethora of quotidian experiences that aren't commonly documented or recognized as actionable mental health issues: financial distress, relationship crises, substance abuse, and so on.

"Frankly, we need to start championing mental health, just like we championed cancer and AIDS years ago", Alice Jordan-Miles from the Indiana Suicide Prevention Coalition explained. She says the suicides of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain this week take her right back to the day her father died.

"Suicide is more than a mental health issue", Schuchat said.

Dr. Schabbing says she's not surprised by the new statistics but says they point to a need for more education and more conversations about suicide and some of the warning signs.

However, data shows more Nevadans under the age of 18 committed suicide this year already, compared to all of last year. In the one-year analysis of 27 states, opioids were found in 31 percent of the 3,003 suicides involving drug overdoses.

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The latest report, released Thursday, found that 45,000 people died by suicide in 2018.

The CDC said the nation's suicide rate is growing among many age groups. And everyone can become alert to warning signs. She said celebrity suicides also typically prompt an increase in calls to suicide help lines.

Keep them safe and get rid of anything that could be used in a suicide attempt.

The rate was the highest in Montana with an increase of 38 percent between 1999 and 2016.

Take the person to an emergency room or seek help from a medical or mental health professional.

Suicide is caused by many factors and each one is different. The CDC suggested that limiting access to lethal means - such as medications and firearms - among people at risk of suicide could help prevent suicide.

- Ask them if they are thinking about killing themselves.

"A big problem that has not yet been addressed in practice is that we continue to rely nearly entirely on people themselves to proactively tell us if they are suicidal", said Matthew Nock, a professor of psychology at Harvard University.

"We have to get the whole community involved - not just the health care community", Dr Reed says. "Anyone contemplating suicide should know that help is available, and that there is no shame in seeking care for your mental health", Dr Altha Stewart of the American Psychiatric Association said in a statement.

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