Every day we scan news headlines and social media for items of interest to the field of suicide prevention. Here’s what we found last week:

Celebrity suicide deaths – preventing contagionCentre for Suicide Prevention, a branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association
June 12, 2018
Responsible media coverage of Spade and Bourdain’s deaths can help erode the silence about suicide and encourage thoughtful conversation. This article talks about the impact of media reportage on suicide.

Opening up about depression and suicide could help someone else on the brinkNPR
June 17, 2018
The author of this editorial explains how the recent celebrity suicide deaths have reminded her of her own struggles with depression and thoughts of anxiety. “…I found the courage to end (my) relationship without ending my own life. A very new, very different chapter of my life began. It had required Herculean strength to choose, moment by moment, to live during that dark period. Even after I made it to safety, the experience remained very frightening and also difficult to explain. But it had been burned into me. If you’ve never been clinically depressed the condition makes no sense. It defies logic. But if you have been, you never forget,” she says.

US Suicide rates are rising faster among women than menNPR
June 14, 2018
30% more Americans are dying by suicide than 20 years ago, and the vast majority of these deaths are among boys and men. However, women are dying by suicide more frequently, especially those in middle-age. Between 2000 to 2016, the suicide rate for women and girls rose 50%.

How to help someone who might be at risk of suicideVox
June 14, 2018
16 of 100,000 people will die by suicide in the US each year, and suicide is preventable. Warning signs for suicide include talking about suicide, feeling hopeless, or being burden to others. People who are thinking about suicide may also use drugs and alcohol more often and withdraw from social activities. If you’re worried about someone: ask them if they’re thinking about suicide and connect them to help.

1,300 Ottawa students said they attempted suicide in 2017, Ottawa Public Health reportsOttawa Citizen
June 12, 2018
A recent survey published in the Status of Mental Health in Ottawa published by Ottawa Public Health found that, while most Ottawans report good mental health (91% of people 12 and up said they are satisfied with their lives), 1,300 students in grades 7 to 12 reported attempting suicide in the past year.

Suicide: We need to be brave enough to askWashington Post
June 12, 2018
If you suspect someone is thinking of suicide, ask them directly, and without judgement. “You don’t have to fix problems… You don’t have to change circumstances. What you can do is to be genuine and present with another person struggling with despair,” explained Ron White, Samaritans’ chief program officer.

When will people get better at talking about suicide Atlantic
June 9, 2018
Suicide contagion happens when suicide deaths aren’t spoken about in a responsible manner, but, when covered responsibly in the media, talking about suicide can encourage others to get help. “I think we’re definitely in a transition phase right now where there’s both a huge progression of improvement, and a mixture of some of the old assumptions and judgements still floating around. I’m referring to blaming the person for being cowardly, or assuming that suicide is a sudden and unpredictable fluky moment of losing their head. That really goes against the science,” says Christine Moutier, the chief medical officer at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

How suicide quietly morphed into a public health crisis New York Times
June 8, 2018
In the context of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain’s recent suicide deaths, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s suicide stats finding American suicide rates rising, this article explores the public health crisis that is suicide. “In contrast to homicide and traffic safety and other public health issues, there’s no one accountable, no one whose job it is to prevent these deaths — no one who gets fired if these numbers go from 45,000 to 50,000,” said Dr. Thomas Insel, former director of the National Institute of Mental Health.“It’s shameful. We would never tolerate that in other areas of public health and medicine.”

After Kate Spade’s death, widening the conversation about women’s mental health Wbur
June 7, 2018
In this interview, experts talk about fashion designer Kate Spade’s suicide, and how, though men die by suicide four times more than women in the US, women’s rates are increasing. They also discuss the role of perfectionism in mental health.

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