Regions 1 & 7
More than 36,000 people commit suicide every year, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control. Approximately 1,000 people annually commit suicide in North Carolina and approximately 14,000 individuals are injured and treated for self-inflicted wounds.
Although National Suicide Prevention Week was observed earlier this month, it’s important year round to recognize the suicide warning signs, in the people we support, our colleagues, family members and loved ones. Some of those warnings include:
•Discussing wanting to die or to kill oneself
•Expressing feeling hopeless or having no reason to live
•Sleeping too much or too little
•Talking about being a burden to others
•Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs
“More so than most fields, we are uniquely aware of the fact that suicide happens and can attest to the devastation caused to family members and loved ones left behind,” explained Ben Millsap, clinical director. “While we should continue to remain vigilant with people we support and inquire and ask questions, please don’t forget to pay attention to people who are close to you. We can spend all day looking for signs of dangerousness in the people we support and miss those same signs in our personal lives when we are 'off the clock'.”
To talk to someone about thoughts of self harm, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 (TALK) is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. To learn about the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention, visit: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/about/director/2012/strategy-on-suicide-prevention.shtml.