The 5 things we wish teachers knew about substance use and suicide.

PowerPoint Slides (PDF)

Further Reading


Canadian Medical Association Journal – Suicide “contagion”: what we know and what we need to find out

Centre for Suicide Prevention – Suicide Contagion and Suicide Clusters

Media Guidelines

Mind Set – Reporting on Mental Health, Covering Suicide


Becker, K., Mayer, M., Nagenborg, H., El-Faddagh, M. & Schmidt, M.H. (2004). Parasuicide online: Can suicide websites trigger suicidal behaviour in predisposed adolescents? Nordic Journal of Psychiatry 58 (2): 111-114.
The internet can be both positive and negative for adolescents predisposed to suicide.

Dunlop, S.M., More, E. & Romer, D. (2011). Where do youth learn about suicides on the Internet, and what influence does this have on suicidal ideation? Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 52 (10): 1073-1080.
The Internet and especially social networking sites are important sources of suicide stories. Discussion forums are associated with increases in ideation.

Luxton, D.D., June, J.D. & Fairall, J.M. (2012). Social media and suicide: A public health perspective. American Journal of Public Health 102 (S2): S195-S200.
An overview of ways that social media can influence suicidal behavior, both negatively and positively.

Parris, L.N., Varjas, K. & Meyers, J.(2014).”The internet is a mask”: High school students’ suggestions for preventing cyberbullying. Western Journal of Emergency Medicine (25): 5.
Strategies include parent/teacher training in technology and cyberbullying, interventions focused more on student behavior than technology restriction, and helping students increase their online safety and awareness.

Swanson, S.A. & Colman, I. (2013). Association between exposure to suicide and suicidality outcomes in youth. Canadian Medical Association Journal 185 (10): 870-877.
Exposure to suicide predicts suicide ideation and attempts.  Results support school-wide interventions over strategies that target interventions toward students closest to the decedent.

Zenere, F.J. (2009). Suicide clusters and contagion. Principal Leadership 10 (2): 12-16.
Because adolescents are most at risk for contagion, the school community can play an important role in identifying students who are vulnerable to imitative suicide and intervene to decrease the propensity for lethal behavior.