Suicide is not a topic people like to talk about, and yet it is not just a growing problem in the US, it is a global problem. Talking about it, investing in things like suicide prevention resources and educating people could make a huge impact and reduce the number of teens who attempt suicide each year. Over the last 50 years, more and more teens are at risk. Some of it is due to certain pressures, some due to bullying, some because of mental health and more. Here is a look at the severity of the problem and what can be done to help.

WHO stats on suicide

  • 77% of global suicides occur in low- and middle-income countries
  • More than 700 000 people die due to suicide every year
  • For every suicide, there are many more people who attempt suicide. A prior suicide attempt is the single most important risk factor for suicide in the general population
  • Suicide is the fourth leading cause of death among 15-19 year-olds
  • Suicide attempts are up to 20 times more frequent than completed suicide
  • While male adult suicide rates have traditionally been the highest, rates among teens have increased by so much they are now the group most at risk in a third of the world
  • While mental disorders, depression in particular are connected more about 90% of suicides, there are also other social and cultural factors

Suicide prevention training and resources

Anyone who was close to someone who committed suicide or has attempted suicide goes through a lot of emotions including guilt when with hindsight they can see there were signs there but they had not recognized them or acted upon them. A lot of people think it is not something they will ever face, many think that mood swings in teens can include suicidal thoughts and depression and that they will grow out of it. But this is not the case, and with suicide prevention resources, training, and more open conversations, more suicide attempts can be prevented.

Considering how to prevent suicide

The WHO has stated that with enough prevention programs, tacking alcohol and drug abuse, treating depression and suicide prevention training in place suicide attempts and rates could be reduced significantly. Along with parents keeping that in mind, schools should also ensure teens have a chance at improving self-esteem, develop skills to help cope with loss and make healthy decisions, and have inervention and crisis management programs.

Parents should consider the emotional intelligence of their teen. Do they have social support, friends they get together with, are succeeding somewhere whether just one class, or in an after school sport? Are they usually honest and forthcoming with things like where they hang out? Do they talk to you about their feelings, or if not you, a peer or someone else? Can they express empathy for others, and do they show kindness to others? Try to encourage them to read stories that show person growth, spend time with supportive and inspiring people. Consider choosing a life coach for them who has experience with teens. Consider receiving training yourself so you have more tools to draw on to support them long-term.

Author's Bio: 

This Article Penned by Lora Davis.