September is suicide awareness month

·2 min read

Sep. 5—Suicide is the leading cause of death among children and adults, but spotting risk factors and warning signs isn't easy.

It's National Suicide Prevention week through September 10, part of Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. Nearly 46,000 people in the United States died by suicide in 2020, which is about one death every 11 minutes.

The number of people who think about or attempt suicide is even higher. In 2020, an estimated 12.2 million American adults seriously thought about suicide, 3.2 million planned a suicide attempt, and 1.2 million attempted suicide according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

On July 16, Ohio and other states established 988 as the new number to contact for mental health, substance use and suicide crises — a simple, easy-to-remember way for people to get help. This new number will allow people to quickly connect with support during a crisis, 24/7, no matter where they live. Calls in Ohio have incresed 57% since 2016.

Coleman's Crisis Centers, serving Allen, Auglaize, Hardin and Stark counties, started answering calls coming in to the new 9-8-8 universal emergency number for mental health crises and suicide prevention. Coleman was chosen to answer calls in these counties and beyond based on its reputation as a leading behavioral health center with the staff and expertise to manage the demand.

If you think you or someone you know is at risk, trained counselors with the 24/7 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline could help you work through any signs you're experiencing or seeing.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, some warning signs may help determine if someone is at risk for suicide, especially if the behavior is new, has increased, or seems related to a painful event, loss, or change. If you or someone you know exhibits any of these, seek help by calling the lifeline.

—Talking about wanting to die or to kill themselves

—Looking for a way to kill themselves, like searching online or buying a gun

—Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live

—Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain

—Talking about being a burden to others

—Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs

—Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly

—Sleeping too little or too much

—Withdrawing or isolating themselves

—Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge

—Extreme mood swings

Reach Dean Brown at 567-242-0409