Suicide Prevention Month/Mental Health Awareness

Suicide Prevention Month/Mental Health Awareness

Madison David, Staff Writer

Years ago, suicide was considered a taboo subject in most households.  However, the world is changing every day, and now suicide is a widely acknowledged and well-advocated subject.  September has been deemed a time to educate yourself on suicide, reach out to your friends and family to check up on them, and ask for help if you’re struggling with something.

There is a week and a day in September dedicated to suicide awareness along with the whole month, but the World Suicide Prevention Day is recognized on September 10.  The day and its activities are organized by the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP).  The organization has had activity in about 70 countries.  The purpose behind having these days is to acknowledge that suicide is completely preventable. 

While the month is used as a time to remember and mourn those lost to suicide, it mainly focuses on mental health and helping each other.  In the United States, anxiety is one of the most common mental illnesses in citizens.  Another common mental illness is depression, which affects 264 million people worldwide.  Both of these mental illnesses have been present in most suicide victims.  However, they can be treated with medications, hospitalization, and therapy. 

When family members face these challenges, it is important for them to have a good support system.  For some people, it might be difficult to reach out and ask for help, so during this month, the focus shifts to offering people help and support. 

Suicide is preventable.  Seeking and offering help are two of the ways it can be prevented.  If you are struggling with suicidal thoughts or tendencies, please call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.