Training offered during Suicide Prevention Week

Published 11:56 am Thursday, September 6, 2018

National Suicide Prevention Week (NSPW) is an annual week-long campaign in the U.S. established in 1975 to inform and engage health professionals and the general public about suicide prevention and warning signs of suicide.

NSPW is also intended to reduce the stigma surrounding the topic, as well as encourage the pursuit of mental health assistance and support people who have attempted suicide.

Awareness events are hosted throughout the week corresponding to World Suicide Prevention Week which is recognized annually Sept. 10.

Suicide rates increased in nearly every state from 1999 through 2016, and 45,000 individuals died by suicide in 2016.

Mental health conditions are often seen as the cause of suicide, however, suicide is rarely caused by any single factor. In fact, many people who die by suicide are not known to have a diagnosed mental health condition at the time of death.

Suicide may be prompted by issues related to relationships, substance use, physical health, and job, money, legal or housing stress.

There are behaviors that are possible indicators someone may be considering suicide such as feeling like a burden, being isolated, increased anxiety, feeling trapped or in unbearable pain, increased substance use, looking for a way to access lethal means, increased anger or rage, extreme mood swings, expressing hopelessness, sleeping too little or too much, talking or posting about wanting to die and making plans for suicide such as giving away possessions.

There are a variety of things states and communities can do to prevent suicide.

Identify and support people at risk of suicide.

Teach coping and problem-solving skills to help people manage challenges with their relationships, jobs, health or other concerns.

Promote safe and supportive environments. This includes safely storing medications and firearms to reduce access among people at risk.

Offer activities that bring people together so they feel connected and not alone.

Connect people at risk to effective and coordinated mental and physical healthcare.

Expand options for temporary help for those struggling to make ends meet.

Assist someone who has thoughts about killing themselves by calling a suicide hotline: 1-1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433) or 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

There will be numerous QPR trainings during September. QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) is a two-hour training that helps individuals recognize the warning signs of suicide, offer hope, get help and save a life.

The training has been organized by the Suicide Prevention Subcommittee, an entity of the Clark County Mental Health Task Force.

The following sessions will be offered:

— 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 11, at the Clark County Public Library

— 10 a.m. to noon Wednesday, Sept. 12, at the Clark County Public Library

— 10 a.m. to noon, 2 to 4 p.m. or 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 18, at Skinnovations, 501 W. Lexington Ave.

— 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Sept. 22, at the Clark County Public Library.

Reservations are required to attend the QPR trainings. To reserve a seat, call or text 859-230-3253 or email cswalker@bluegrass.org.

Clark County Health Department provides programs for the entire family, including WIC, HANDS, family planning, well child care/immunizations, and home health care. For more information on all of our service, please call 859/744-4482 or visit our website at www.clarkhealthdept.org Information for this article was obtained from cdc.gov/vitalsigns/pdf/vs-0618-suicide-H.pdf.