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Every 13 minutes someone in the United States dies by suicide. September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the mental health of thousands of individuals and while we do not yet know the long term effects of increased isolation, fear, anxiety, and depression, we do know these can all be warning signs of suicide. Other signs to watch for include:

•    Feeling like a burden
•    Feeling trapped or in unbearable pain
•    Increased substance use
•    Looking for a way to access lethal means
•    Increased anger or rage
•    Extreme mood swings
•    Expressing hopelessness
•    Sleeping too little or too much
•    Talking or posting about wanting to die
•    Making plans for suicide

Here is how to support a loved one in your life from the risk of suicide:

•    Ask the question, “Do you feel safe?”
•    Keep them safe.
•    Be there
•    Help them connect
•    Follow up

Did you know?

•    Anyone can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
•    In 2020 the FCC designated the three digit number 988 for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. This is slated to be completed in July 2022.

Suicide is a scary life altering event, when it occurs loved ones are often caught off-guard and understanding the next steps to take can be difficult to determine.  Understanding thoughts, emotions and behaviors of a person contemplating suicide can be difficult and change without warning.  Taking a proactive approach to assist our loved ones can dramatically decrease suicide rates and numbers, while also leading people to much needed help and support.  In light of Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, here is a list of red flags that you can look for as a loved one to take a proactive approach in the mental health and wellbeing of those around you.

•    Substance Use/Abuse, Increased Use
•    Aggressive Behavior, Unusual Behavior
•    Withdrawal from Family, Friends and Activities
•    Dramatic Mood Swings, All or Nothing Thinking Patterns
•    Increased Impulsive or Reckless Behaviors
•    Giving Away Possessions, Especially Highly Prized Items
•    Tying Up Loose Ends, Paying Off Debt, Changing Personal Accounts
•    Saying Good-Bye’s, Using Good-Bye Language, Not Planning for the Future

In addition to the above mentioned red flags, individuals are placed at higher risk if they have experienced additional risk factors such as these:

•    Family history of suicide
•    History of Substance Use/Abuse
•    If an individual is currently intoxicated
•    Access to Firearms
•    Struggling with a serious o chronic medical illness
•    Although more women attempt suicide in general, men are four times more likely to die by suicide.
•    History of trauma and/or abuse.
•    Prolonged exposure to stress
•    Recent tragedy or significant loss

If you or someone you know is experiencing these red flags or symptoms, now is the time to reach out for support.

•    Emergency Situations: Call 911 immediately
•    Experiencing Suicidal thoughts: National Suicide Hotline 1-800-273 TALK (8255)
•    Notify your School Counselor, School Social Worker or CRCC Therapist, we are all here to help and support you!

Raise Awareness Support Prevention and be Proactive by sharing these on your social media accounts: #SuicidePrevention #StigmaFree

CRCC offers mental health services? We provide increased access to mental health support through our partnerships with local school districts and outpatient at both of our locations. CRCC also offers Telehealth Services. Call us today, for the hope you need to get back on track.

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