• Annaliese Rix

TODAY is INTERNATIONAL SUICIDE PREVENTION DAY

Suicide is among the top 20 leading causes of death globally for people of all ages. According to the WHO suicide is responsible for over 800,000 deaths per year, which equates to one suicide every 40 seconds.

It is also stated that for every suicide there is 25 people attempting suicide, and many more have serious thoughts of suicide. The WHO released statistics indicating that approximately 135 people suffer intense grief, or other affects, for each suicide. This amounts to 108 million people per year who are profoundly impacted.

Suicidal behaviour includes suicide, suicide ideation and suicide attempts. For each life lost, someone's child, partner, parent, friend or colleague, are affected. We can not turn a blind eye to suicide and its devastating consequences.


Suicide is a heterogenous phenomenon and the result of different variables e.g.genetic, psychological,social, cultural and other risk factors, which is sometimes combined with experiences of trauma and loss.


It is important to emphasise suicide prevention as a priority. each of us can make a difference in our immediate sphere, or society. This can happen via: EDUCATING YOURSELF about the causes and signs of suicide, RAISING AWARENESS, showing COMPASSION and CARE to those in distress in your community or immediate circle.


Suicide is universal, knows no boundaries, and affects everyone.


WARNING SIGNS of SUICIDAL IDEATION include, but are not limited to:


*Talking about suicide

*Making statements about feeling hopeless, helpless or worthless

*A deepening depression

*Preoccupation with death

*Taking unnecessary risks or exhibiting self-destructive behaviour/self-injury

*Out of character behaviour

*A loss of interest in the things one cares about

*Making arrangements, setting ones's affairs in order

*Giving prized possessions away

*Withdrawing or isolating

*Increased use of Alcohol use and/or Drugs

*Change in personality, and/or extreme mood swings, anxiety, or agitation

*Changes in eating/sleeping habits


HOW CAN YOU HELP:

- stay calm and listen

- let them talk about their feelings

- be accepting, do not judge

- ask if they have suicidal thoughts

- take threats seriously

- don't swear secrecy, tell someone

HELP can be obtained from:

1. Mental Health services

2. Doctor

3. Clergy,Teacher,Counsellor

4. Family,Friend, Relative

5. Crisis Line


Sometimes there is no warning signs that is as obvious. Unnecessary guilt and self-blame result in more pain - and another harmful cycle. Let us all strife to establish CONNECTION in our relationships as best as possible...


Sources:WHO and NSPW





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