World Suicide Prevention Day 2019

World Suicide Prevention Day Poster 2019.jpg

Suicide Prevention Month

September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.  National Suicide Prevention Week is September 8 – 14, 2019, with World Suicide Prevention Day on the 10th.  During this month, week and day, individuals and organizations alike will be drawing attention to the problem of suicide and advocating the prevention of this tragedy. 


Do you know someone who may be Suicidal?

You can do something to help.

Looking out for a friend or loved one is an important part of preventing suicides.  


What is happening in this person’s life? Have they experienced any life changes recently?

  • Recent loss (of a loved one, a job, an income/ livelihood, a relationship, a pet)

  • Major disappointment (failed exams, missed job promotions)

  • Change in circumstances (separation/ divorce, retirement, redundancy,

    children leaving home)

  • Mental disorder or physical illness/ injury

  • Suicide of a family member, friend or a public figure

  • Financial and/ or legal problems.

  • Traumatic experience, Fire, Rape, Accident. 


How to Be Helpful to Someone Who Is Threatening Suicide

  • Be direct. Talk openly and matter-of-factly about suicide.

  • Be willing to listen. Allow expressions of feelings. Accept the feelings.

  • Be non-judgmental. Don't debate whether suicide is right or wrong, or whether feelings are good or bad. Don't lecture on the value of life.

  • Get involved. Become available. Show interest and support.

  • Don't dare him or her to do it.

  • Don't act shocked. This will put distance between you.

  • Don't be sworn to secrecy. Seek support.

  • Offer hope that alternatives are available but do not offer glib reassurance.

  • Ask if you may contact a family member

  • Take action. Remove means, such as guns or stockpiled pills.

  • Don’t leave them alone, get help from persons specializing in crisis intervention and

    suicide prevention.

  • If necessary, get in touch with the police


Be Aware of Feelings

Many people at some time in their lives think about suicide. Most decide to live because they eventually come to realize that the crisis is temporary, and death is permanent. On the other hand, people having a crisis sometimes perceive their dilemma as inescapable and feel an utter loss of control. 

These are some of the feelings and thoughts they experience:

  • Can't stop the pain

  • Can't think clearly

  • Can't make decisions

  • Can't see any way out

  • Can't sleep, eat or work

  • Can't get out of depression

  • Can't make the sadness go away

  • Can't see a future without pain

  • Can't see themselves as worthwhile

  • Can't get someone's attention

  • Can't seem to get control

  • Feeling hopeless and helpless

If someone you know exhibits these symptoms, offer help!

If you experience these feelings, get help!


Treatments and Therapies

Brief Interventions

Safety Planning: Personalized safety planning has been shown to help reduce suicidal thoughts and actions. Patients work with a caregiver to develop a plan that describes ways to limit access to lethal means such as firearms, pills, or poisons. The plan also lists coping strategies and people and resources that can help in a crisis.

Follow-up phone calls: Research has shown that when at-risk patients receive further screening, a Safety Plan intervention, and a series of supportive phone calls, their risk of suicide goes down.



Multiple types of psychosocial interventions have been found to help individuals who have attempted suicide. These types of interventions may prevent someone from making another attempt.



Some individuals at risk for suicide might benefit from medication. Doctors and patients can work together to find the best medication or medication combination, as well as the right dose. Because many individuals at risk for suicide often have a mental illness and substance use problems, individuals might benefit from medication along with psychosocial intervention.