According to the Iowa Department of Public Health, 445 Iowans died by suicide in 2013. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for Iowa 15 to 24 year olds, as well as 25 to 44 year olds. It is third leading cause of death amongst 5 to 14 year olds.
Talking about suicide is not an easy thing to do, but if you are concerned, your involvement might save a life.
Ways to start a conversation about suicide:
- I have been feeling concerned about you lately.
- Recently, I have noticed some differences in you and wondered how you are doing.
- I wanted to check in with you because you haven’t seemed yourself lately.
Questions you can ask:
- When did you begin feeling like this?
- Did something happen that made you start feeling this way?
- How can I best support you right now?
- Have you thought about getting help?
What you can say that helps:
- You are not alone in this. I’m here for you.
- You may not believe it now, but the way you’re feeling will change.
- I may not be able to understand exactly how you feel, but I care about you and want to help.
September 8 through 14 is Suicide Prevention Week. While no single suicide prevention effort will be sufficient or appropriate for all individuals or communities, it is clear far too many Iowans die by suicide each year and some of these deaths could be preventable.
If you or someone you know appears depressed and possibly suicidal, it IS ‘your business’ to get involved. Call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 273-TALK or click here. You may also contact Your Life Iowa at (855)-581-8111 or click here; in addition, you may text HELP to 85511 from 3:00 to 11:00 P.M. daily (standard message and data rates may apply).
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