THIS IS THE THIRD INSTALLMENT IN A SERIES ABOUT SUICIDE
By Mick Holien
Lake is the seventh leading count y in suicide deaths with 109 deaths in a population of some 438,000 and the Flathead Indian Reservation has the second most suicide incidents in the state trailing only Roosevelt County where the Fort Peck Reservation is located but by almost four percent.
And since the county in which we live satisfies many of the elements contributing to suicide but few of the top tier assistance that leaves those of us who share their space to be knowledgeable and involved.
First of all the social factors:
While we like other corners of the state pride ourselves about it rural residency and social isolation are prime social factors in the proliferation of the disease.
Yes I did say disease not a wanton act of self destruction.
Statistics indicated approximately 90 percent suffer from mental illness with Major Depression coupled with Alcoholism playing a significant role.
And contrary to popular belief depression is treatable even in young people and with an 86 percent success rate gained with treatment of therapy and anti depressants.
But while these results are somewhat profound, recoverees sometimes send misleading signals; even act giddy because with their plan formulated they can see an end to the pain and relief of their burden.
So just what can we look for to help in determining if a person is suicidal?
- Take every threat seriously being careful not to put someone in a position to attempt to prove they are serious.
- If a person brings up the possibility realize it is a cry for help and encourage them to talk about their feelings. Don’t stray from the word “suicide” and ask if they have thought about it.
- Increased alcohol or drug use.
- Anxiety and lack of sleep.
- Feeling trapped or hopeless.
- Withdrawn from friends.
- Uncontrolled anger
- Acting uncharacteristically reckless.
- Drastic or dramatic mood changes.
On Friday’s installment of their six-part series, we’ll look at how to talk to as suicidal person, how to assess the level of the risk and where to get help.
The National 24/7 Hotline is 1-800-273-8255.
If you do nothing after this series, write down this number and carry it with you.