We can all help pre­vent sui­cide


THE most re­cent fig­ures for death by sui­cide in Aus­tralia show they are the high­est rates we have seen in over 10 years — in 2015 there were 3027 deaths (ABS, 2016).

This equates to eight peo­ple dy­ing too early each day and, for young peo­ple, sui­cide is the lead­ing cause of death.

The num­ber of deaths by sui­cide is high and there are things we can do as in­di­vid­u­als, fam­i­lies and or­gan­i­sa­tions to save a life.

Na­tional Sui­cide Preven­tion Day to­day will see peo­ple tak­ing ac­tion and spread­ing aware­ness.

TEAMhealth works across the Top End to pro­vide ev­i­dence based men­tal health ser­vices, fo­cused on sup­port, re­cov­ery and re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion to re­duce the num­ber of sui­cides in the com­mu­nity.

They pro­vide early in­ter­ven­tion and ed­u­ca­tion pro­grams to in­di­vid­u­als and fam­i­lies to pro­mote re­silience and well­be­ing, which help to pre­vent sui­cide.

TEAMhealth youth men­tal health ed­u­ca­tor Sacha King said: “It can be hard to speak to some­one about sui­cide as it is a dif­fi­cult sub­ject to talk about with a loved one, how­ever, it has been proven that ask­ing some­one di­rectly and non­judg­men­tally, ‘are you think­ing of sui­cide?’ - is a life­sav­ing ques­tion.

“Sui­cide does not dis­crim­i­nate and it may be hard to see if some­one is un­well.

“It is rec­om­mended that we look for changes in thoughts, be­hav­iours and emo­tions.

“When we no­tice small things are out of char­ac­ter for that in­di­vid­ual we need to check in with them and make sure they are not alone.”

Peo­ple who seek help for their thoughts of sui­cide are much less likely to act on them and can find ways to man­age them.

“If you, or some­one you know, is strug­gling with thoughts of sui­cide hav­ing a strong sup­port net­work and con­nect­ing with pro­fes­sional help are im­por­tant for long term well­ness,” Ms King said.

With about 30 at­tempts to each one death by sui­cide (Life­line, 2017) we know from lived ex­pe­ri­ence peo­ple do not want to die, and we all can be a part of keep­ing them alive.

TEAMhealth staff are trained in and pro­vide ed­u­ca­tion cour­ses such as safeTALK, AS­SIST and other sui­cide and men­tal health aware­ness and in­ter­ven­tion train­ings.

TEAMhealth are happy to di­rect you to the train­ings by call­ing TEAMhealth on 8943 9600 or visit www.teamhealth.asn.au.

Picture: SUP­PLIED

TEAMhealth is front and cen­tre in the fight to pre­vent sui­cide deaths in Aus­tralia

Staff will be present to­day (Septem­ber 10), for World Sui­cide Preven­tion Day walks: Walk 4 Sui­cide Preven­tion Dar­win start­ing at Alawa Ovals. Come Walk with me, Sui­cide Preven­tion walk Palmer­ston start­ing at Me­mo­rial Park at 5pm.

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