Suicide rates are increasing all over the United States and the world. However, the topic continues to be tabooed, and misconception about the causes of suicide are really common among the society.
In Muskingum County, Ohio, there have been 14 deaths from suicide so far this year. This is more that the average loss in past years. Every day thousands of kids are attempting to commit suicide in the United States, most of them struggle in silence with mental issues.
“People are afraid of the whole topic,” says David Jobes, the head of Catholic University’s Suicide Prevention Lab. “It just feels like something that’s left unsaid or untouched.”
Suicide: The second leading cause of death among young people
About a hundred and some citizens in America die each day from suicide. The highest rate of suicide deaths used to be among elderly white man. Now it affects mainly middle-aged, white men but it is increasingly affecting younger people. Suicide used to be the third leading cause of death among young people 15 to 24. Now it has become the second leading cause of death for ages between 10 and 34.
In North Dakota, Governor Jack Dalrymple proclaimed September as the Suicide Prevention Month. Since the state’s Health Department says that suicide is the second-leading cause of death among the young people between 10 to 24, and the ninth leading cause of death in people of all ages. According to the Health Department, there were 137 suicides in North Dakota during 2015. Because of that, the State Government is trying to encourage the awareness among the residents in North Dakota.
In Ohio, deaths from suicide triple the number of fatalities caused by homicide. This is very concerning since these situations have an effect not only on the suicidal people but the family and those around them. Their lives are affected forever in a different way from other losses of loved ones. In Ohio, there is a Suicide Prevention Coalition that meets every first Thursday of every month on the third floor of the Health Department building at 205 N. Seventh St. The program aims to help to raise awareness in society of how people can be useful to suicide survivor reducing the pain associated with loss.
Suicidal thinking is an illness that needs to be recognized and treated. Suicidal thinking is one of the few illness that can be prevented. People can save others from suicide by asking them if how they feel, if a person talks about suicide we could stay with them, listen to them and help them to save them. People often suicide because they feel pain, they lack hope, they feel as if there is no way to amend a situation. But they also feel alone and left out, like nobody would understand or help them. Most of the cases, people commit suicide from depression.
Depression causes about 50 percent of suicides, but it is not the sole cause, other diagnoses include schizophrenia, psychotic disorders, alcohol and drug abuse and anxiety. It is important to understand that there is more to suicide than depression, they are not synonyms.
Myths about suicide
A lot of people thinking about suicide might keep it a secret, however, according to David Jobes, suicidal people don’t do it as an impulsive decision, they go dropping hints to friends, kids might write depressive essays, what teens don’t do is tell parents. But they spend weeks thinking about it. There is a theory that people don’t act impulsively regarding suicide, they fantasize about it, read on it on the web, write suicide notes. There is always a history behind the disastrous attempt.
As well, Jobes explained several misconceptions about suicide. He says that people need to ask and talk about suicide because it is highly stigmatized, it feels like something left under the rug. People need to be direct to those who seem likely to commit suicide. He says that we can identify suicidal thinking and give proper support to the people to save lives because most of the people who seems suicidal and talk about it don’t actually want to be dead.
“They’re giving other people lots of indications, lots of warning signs, lots of communications that this is something that they would like to not do, but it requires people identifying that and getting them the proper help, ” said Jobes.
The role of schools is critical because there is a misconception regarding the fact that kids between 5 and 12 don’t think about suicide. Lots of kids take their life. In the U.S., about 35 children aged under 12 suicide each year, and it is something that it’s not really discussed. But their suicidal hints are made to friends or in the school, not directly to their parents. That’s why it is important to reinforce an educational system that is capable of managing and advising kids with suicidal thinking or mental illness. The school guidance counselors are most focused on helping kids go to college, but they don’t typically manage mental health issues.