Behavioral Healthcare

Suicide Prevention: Practical Steps

Integrated Psychiatric Consultants | September 26, 2020

Suicide is the 10th leading cause for death in the United States: one that we can prevent.

During the year of 2018, there were 1.4 million suicide attempts in the United States and that number has only gone up with the increased mental health illnesses during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Organizations like the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention are spreading awareness about suicide and offering nationwide support for those at risk for suicide and their families. With the end of September marking the end of Suicide Prevention Month, we must continue to do everything we can to aid in suicide prevention throughout the nation.

What can you do to help?

  • Spread awareness
  • Take time to ask your friends and family, “How are you really?”
  • Take any suicide talk or behavior seriously
  • Listen to others openly and compassionately
  • Seek professional help when needed

Be aware of red flag signs, including:

  • Anxiety, agitation, irritability
  • Pulling away from friends and family
  • Past attempts
  • Self-hating thoughts or talk
  • Increased use of alcohol or drugs
  • Loss of interest in favorite activities — “nothing matters”- mentality
  • Risk-taking behavior
  • Suicidal thoughts, plans, or actions

We strongly believe that everyone should have fair and affordable access to psychiatric and behavioral health care, especially in emergency situations. With easier access to telepsychiatry and fewer hospitals in shortage of 24/7 on-call psychiatrists, patients and families will have easier access to the care they deserve in suicide and mental health situations.

We acknowledge that the number of suicide rates and attempts in America is increasing at a horrifying rate and promise to do all we can to help prevention. Every life is important and everyone deserves the help they need in a crisis.

Data Source: National Center for Health Statistics, 2018

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