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National Suicide Prevention Month

Recognizing September as National Suicide Prevention Month.
The Suicide Prevention Awareness Month’s ribbon is purple and teal. 
The Suicide Prevention Awareness Month’s ribbon is purple and teal. PC: NARA & DVIDS PUBLIC

While the generational perception of the prioritization of mental health has evolved, suicide continues to be the 11th leading cause of death within the United States. The tragedy of suicide is inconceivable for both its victims and those involved within the person’s life. 

As sensitive as this topic is, the The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) dedicates the entire month of September to inform the public on the severity of this issue, advocating direction in which they can take to save lives within their communties. 

While World Suicide Prevention Day is on Sept. 10, its national week is ongoing until Sept. 16. 

The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline conjects its #BeThe1To message for the month, which refers to the motions we can take to prevent suicide from happening. 

The Lifeline’s goal of these steps is to not only raise suicide prevention but to help mold struggling victims into viewing life in a newer, hopeful light. 

  1. Ask (Caringly discussing suicide with the individual, as studies show it decreases the idealization of it.)
  2. Be There (Listening without judgment, being a comforter instead of an opposed aggressor to their dark thoughts.)
  3. Keep Them Safe (Making “lethal means” unavailable or “less deadly” to decrease the use/method of them overall.)
  4. Help Them Stay Connected (Construct a “network” of supportive people and resources to make them feel less alone while creating a positive environment.)
  5. Follow Up (Keeping in touch with them along their journeys, especially after dischargement from professional care services.)

As today’s teenagers deal with the inevitable consequences of social media, its platforms have built easier pathways to psychological problems in teens; serving as a leading factor in the idealization of suicide. 

While teens view social media as a necessity to their young social and personal lives, there needs to be a barrier in which they understand its harmful effects on their mental health. 

It remains important to take potential risk behaviors of a person seriously in real life and on social media. Take both forms of warning signs literally, whether in person or on a screen. 

Relating back to National Suicide Prevention Month, being aware and prepared for stepping into these serious situations is essential to preventing this cause of death. 

There is never an age to suicide, meaning adults and adolescents should be informed upon these matters, never knowing if they will need this knowledge later on. 

All in all, the purpose of this designated month is to help spread awareness of the matter, but more importantly, to distinguish how to to prevent it altogether, giving help to those who are in need of it. 

*If you or anyone you know is at risk of suicide call the Suicide Prevention Line at 988.

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Alisi Tuatonga
Alisi Tuatonga, Arts and Entertainment Editor
Alisi Tuatonga is a junior and is her third year of journalism. She looks forward to contributing to Norse Notes and writing articles. In her free time, she enjoys playing soccer, listening to music and being in water (preferably the ocean). With Journalism being her favorite class, she is looking into majoring in the subject when college comes around.

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