National Suicide Awareness Month: Building Awareness in Your Community

Woman devastated

Note: If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. Your life matters.

According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), there are an average of 123 deaths by suicide every single day. This devastating statistic means that each year, we lose nearly 44,965 precious lives just in the United States alone. Hearing the news of someone who lost their life to suicide often raises tragic questions of what could be done to prevent this, what resources could have been provided and what might that individual have needed access to in order to resolve whatever anguish or distress they were experiencing; while we cannot know the reasons behind this tragedy, we can do our best to provide support, suicide awareness and suicide prevention to our local communities.

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) emphasizes that simply educating our loved ones of warning signs for suicide means they can step in and provide resources/support if they believe someone may be contemplating it. If you’re wanting to make a difference in your community, you could easily create flyers or have community-wide discussions about the warning signs of suicide:

  • Threats or comments about harming oneself or leaving this world
  • Withdrawing from friends, family, and activities
  • Behaving aggressively
  • Dramatic mood swings
  • Impulsive or reckless behavior
  • Increased substance abuse

In addition to educating through informational materials or discussions, you can also volunteer at a local mental health organization or recovery treatment center as to help provide support to those who may need it. Some places allow individuals to volunteer by hosting workshops on mental wellness tools such as meditation, mindfulness, and yoga to help people find a sense of peace and calmness even if their mind feels chaotic.

Lastly, share information about suicide awareness and prevention via your social media pages. Previous studies have shown that social media does have a major impact on one’s perception of themselves and their world; in fact, it can lead to depression and a host of other mental concerns. Start dialogues with those you’re connected to about seeking help and positive aspects of recovery. You never know the lives you may be saving in doing so.

Simple Recovery is a world-renowned, California state-licensed substance abuse recovery center. We offer dual diagnosis treatment, so if you are experiencing both substance abuse and symptoms of a mental disorder, call us today at 888-743-0490 so that we can work with you to restore your happiness, health, and well-being. You do not have to continue living this way; there are many people here ready to help you.