World Suicide Prevention Day 2024

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Health Assured team

28 July 2023

World Suicide Prevention Day 2024 is on Sunday September 10th. The aim of this day is to raise more awareness worldwide about the impact of suicide while openly discussing these issues to prevent future suicides and get people the help they need.

A 2022 study from the Office for National Statistics reported 5,583 suicides registered in England and Wales the previous year, three quarters of which were males. Due to the sensitive and personal nature of suicide, it’s not always easy to have open discussions about how you or someone you love may be feeling.

To reduce the stigma and encourage people feeling suicidal to come forward, here are some important things to consider this World Suicide Prevention Day.

Spotting the Signs

There are many reasons why a person may be contemplating suicide, and not all of them will apply to everyone. However, some of the broader reasons for someone considering suicide may be due to financial worries, bereavement, relationship/family issues, depression, or physical illness.

While some people may have become skilled at masking their suicidal thoughts, some of the more common signs of a suicidal person are listed below.

  • Threating to take their own life or harm themselves regularly (even if they say they’re joking)
  • Withdrawing from friends and family, or unexpected goodbye calls and conversations
  • Feeling helpless and hopeless about the future – believing nothing will get better
  • Regularly purchasing and accumulating a large volume of pills
  • Talking, writing, or researching about death or suicide

Supporting Someone who is Suicidal

When someone you care about is feeling suicidal, it’s not easy to know what to say, how to act, and how to support them with getting the assistance they need.

Encourage: Let them know they’re in a safe and supportive place where they can speak freely about how they feel.

Reassure: Be sure to use language that’s reassuring and kind. It can be vulnerable to admit when you’re feeling suicidal, and that reassurance can make a huge difference.

Remain Calm: Try not to mirror the person expressing these feelings. Aim to speak calmly and slowly to provide some grounding for them, instead of matching their energy and tone.

Find Support: Work with them to get the support needed, whether it’s through calling 999 in emergency cases, or sitting with them as they call Samaritans/their Student Assistance Programme counselling team.

What to do if You’re Feeling Suicidal

If you’re experiencing suicidal thoughts, it’s important to reach out to your trusted circle of friends and family members or seek out treatment and support as soon as possible. Always remember that you’re not a burden and that you deserve to have a place to discuss these feelings where you’ll be heard, understood, and helped.

Wellbeing and Mental Health Support

If you have a Student Assistance Programme in place, Health Assured’s counsellors are available to you 24/7. No matter how hopeless things may feel, there is always someone waiting to listen and support you. Call our confidential helpline or reach out via the My Healthy Advantage App today.

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