CAPITAL BERG – Researchers from the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) inform that a million Americans attempt suicide every year. Not all of them are successful, but 40,000 are. And out of the successful ones, 5,000 involve teens and young adults.
News from earlier this month described the case of a 19 year old who jumped off from the fourth floor of a Philadelphia hotel after breaking the corridor window with a nearby trashcan.
Such events are not uncommon. While the media rarely gives suicide the attention it deserves, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention has revealed that a United States citizen attempts to end her or his own life once every 12.5 minutes. This leads up to a total of 40,000 individuals who die every year out of their own initiative.
We’ve reached a point where suicide has become the tenth most common cause of death among Americans of all ages, and the second most common cause of death among young Americans between the ages of 10 and 24.
And things are not looking up. The number of people who die because of suicide has already surpassed that of people who die because of car crashes, and researchers say that suicide rates are continuing to grow as you read this.
However, field expert have tried to remedy the situation by declaring September “Suicide Prevention Awareness Month” and making an active effort to inform people about the risk factors of suicide, the symptoms and behaviors that might lead to the decision, and ways in which we can help others in danger of becoming victims.
Basically, the goal is to use this month to “help promote resources and awareness around the issues of suicide prevention, how you can help others, and how to talk about suicide without increasing the risk of harm”, and to repeat the event on a yearly basis.
Studies and surveys have shown that the two (2) primary risk factors of suicide are anxiety and depression. USA Today’s Gregg Zoroya explained in one of his articles that 90 percent (90%) of all individuals who attempt to end their lives suffer from either a mental illness or a mental disorder.
And when field experts separate young people from the general population, the number goes even higher – somewhere around 95 percent (95%) of the teens who want to die by their own hand suffer from a psychological disorder, the most common one being depression.
Signs that someone you love may be struggling with depression include withdrawal from friends and family members, lack of enthusiasm for things that once made them happy, spending a lot of time feeling sad, hopeless, or worthlessness, easily exploding into bursts of irritability, anger, or hostility, a drastic decrease or increase in eating and sleeping, finding it hard to focus on daily tasks, work, or homework, breaking into tears at odd moments or frequently crying, dialog suggesting that they aren’t long for this world.
Certain studies that have focused exclusively on high school students have found that 16 percent (16%) of them have thought about committing suicide at least once in their life, 13 percent (13%) of these teens have put together a plan that they could follow to carry out the attempt, and 8 percent (8%) of these teens put that plan to use within a year of making it.
Although most suicide victims are boys, girls find it easies to talk about attempting or considering to attempt suicide.
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