All of us must have been saddened by the highly publicized suicides of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain. These high profile tragedies serve to remind us that the struggle against mental illness affects all socioeconomic sectors of our society. Being rich and well-known does not immunize us from these challenges. As such, we’re all in this together regardless of socioeconomic status and everyone deserves our love and support.
The Centers for Disease Control, via their Vital Signs report, has recently released an article titled, “Suicide rates rising across the U.S. – Comprehensive prevention goes beyond a focus on mental health concerns”. The rate of suicide has increased in nearly every state of our nation. Of note, the cause of suicide is rarely attributed to a single factor, and the efforts of suicide prevention focuses largely on identifying and providing treatments for individuals with mental health conditions.
According to the CDC’s Principal Deputy Director Anne Schuchat, M.D., “Suicide is a leading cause of death for Americans – and it’s a tragedy for families and communities across the country. From individuals and communities to employers and healthcare professionals, everyone can play a role in efforts to help save lives and reverse this troubling rise in suicide.”
As stated in the article:
To help states with this important work, in 2017 CDC released a technical package on suicide prevention that describes strategies and approaches based on the best available evidence. This can help inform states and communities as they make decisions about prevention activities and priorities.
Everyone can help prevent suicide:
- Learn the warning signs of suicide to identify and appropriately respond to people at risk. Find out how this can save a life by visiting: www.BeThe1to.com
- Reduce access to lethal means – such as medications and firearms – among people at risk of suicide.
- Contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline for help: 1-800-273-TALK (8255). https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org
If you’re experiencing suicidal thoughts for yourself; or, if you are concerned about someone else, please call the Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. Lifeline counselors are available 24/7, and their service is free and confidential.
Please be your own best mental health advocate and seek help to save yourself or someone else in need. There is no cause for feelings of embarrassment or shame. Everyone’s life is valuable and we should take this opportunity to reach out for support when needed, and to reach out and help someone else when they are in need!