CEBU CITY, Philippines— The World Health Organization reports that there are more than 700,000 suicides recorded per year worldwide.
A staggering number that can be lessened if we link with each other in fighting against suicide.
From 2021 through 2023, “Creating Hope Through Action” served as the triennial theme for World Suicide Prevention Day.
This topic acts as a potent call to action and a reminder that suicide is not the only option and that, by acting, we can increase prevention.
Here are five simple things you can do to help those close to us fight their thoughts on suicide, along with references to the provided article:
- Listen Actively and Non-Judgmentally: Be an attentive and empathetic listener. When someone is going through a crisis, giving them a safe space to express their thoughts and feelings can provide significant relief. Studies have shown that active listening and non-judgmental support are essential in suicide prevention efforts.
- Stay Connected and Communicate Regularly: Keep in touch with your loved ones regularly, even if it’s just a simple text message or phone call to check on them. Regular communication helps individuals feel valued and less isolated, reducing the risk of suicide.
- Offer Practical Help: Offer concrete assistance with everyday tasks or challenges they might be facing. Whether it’s helping with household chores, providing transportation, or accompanying them to appointments, your support can ease their burdens.
- Encourage Professional Help: Gently encourage your loved one to seek professional help from therapists, counselors, or support groups. Research indicates that early intervention and access to mental health services significantly reduce the risk of suicide.
- Know the Warning Signs and Be Prepared: Familiarize yourself with the warning signs of suicide, such as extreme mood swings, social withdrawal, or giving away belongings. Knowing these signs and being prepared to respond can make a crucial difference in preventing suicide.
The sad realities of suicide have been in our midst for the longest time, this September 10, during World Suicide Prevention Day let’s be more vocal in our fight against suicide and help amplify ways to prevent suicide.
Those facing huge personal problems or experiencing extreme sadness can reach out to and call Tawag Paglaum Centro Bisaya if they need someone to talk to. Tawag Paglaum Centro Bisaya is a 24/7 call-based hotline for suicide prevention and emotional crisis intervention established in Cebu. Anyone in Central Visayas experiencing a mental disorder relapse or suicidal thoughts may reach the hotline at 0939-936-5433 or 0927-654-1629.