Suicide rates are not higher at Christmastime, in fact, suicide rates are fairly consistent throughout the year. This myth has been perpetuated by popular culture, such as movies like It’s a Wonderful Life. This myth can actually detract from the real facts surrounding suicide, and the temptation of the media and other informers to refer to it may mean a missed opportunity to effectively and responsibly spread awareness about suicide.

Not only is this a myth, but to the contrary, some researchers claim that the holidays can lessen the chance of a suicide, as people feel more connected to those around them. Despite this, we can all agree that the holidays can indeed be a stressful time. Loneliness, intensification of feelings of loss, financial hardships, family conflict and substance misuse can increase during the holidays.

Remember self care: take the time to be mindful of your own mental health this time of year – remember to do the things you love.

Read more about the myths and facts surrounding suicide.