September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. – The Alabama Department of Mental Health, its community partners and other mental health organizations join forces to recognize September as Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. This year’s theme, #BeThe1To is the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline’s message, which educates about what we can all do to prevent suicide. In addition to National Suicide Prevention Week, the entire month is celebrated and highlights World Suicide Prevention Day (Sept. 10). 
  
“During this month, we pause to remember those we have lost to suicide and encourage survivors of suicide, survivors of suicide attempts and individuals who have triumphed over mental illness to spread the awareness of suicide prevention. Together we can help prevent suicide,” she continued. 
  
In almost all cases, suicide can be traced to unrecognized, or untreated mental health, or a result from a variety of risk factors and personal conditions that combine to make a person feel hopeless. Suicide can happen to a person regardless of any sex, race, ethnicity or economic status. 
  

A recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention revealed suicide rates increased 33% between 1999 and 2019 – and suicide has become the 10th leading cause of death among young (10-34) Americans. The 2019 suicide rate in Alabama was 16.4 per 100,000, which was higher than the 2018 U.S. rate of 14.5 per 100,000. 
  
“We know that one death by suicide is too many and early recognition of warning signs and early intervention can save lives,” explained Beverly Johnson, ADMH Prevention Services director. 
  
Help is available, and you do not have to suffer emotional or psychological pain alone. Learn how to help and obtain resources at https://afsp.org/take-action/. For free confidential support 24/7, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by phone 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or online chat http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org
  
The NAMI Crisis Text Line also provides support for people or your loved ones in distress 24/7. Text HOME to 741741 from anywhere in the U.S. or visit online at https://www.crisistextline.org
  
For more information on Suicide Prevention programs at the ADMH, please contact Maegan Ford at 334-353-7506.