Suicide Education

Learn more about Suicide Prevention & Education…

At Crisis Clinic one of our primary goals is suicide prevention.We believe in empowering those who are considering suicide by helping them choose life and find other ways to stop their pain. Educating our community about the frequency in which suicide is chosen by our friends, neighbors and family members as the way out helps us understand the seriousness of this issue. Here is information about suicide in King County and Washington State.

In Washington, approximately 800 people commit suicide each year; of those approximately 29% occur in King County. Since 2000, the number of deaths from suicide has been increasing from 178 to 232 in 2010, with a peak of 250 in 2009.

Approximately 40% of all suicides are the result of using a gun. Approximately 19% of all suicides were from people over age 60 and 29% are by adults 40-49 years old.

Youth are at serious risk of suicide

In Washington State, suicide is the second leading cause of death among youth ages 15-24, with more than 100 suicides a year. Another 14 teens are hospitalized each week from suicide attempts. In King County in 2009 and 2010, there were 9 suicides each year, a significant decrease from the 13 suicides in both 2003 and 2004.(King County Medical Examiner 2003-2009)

According to the 2008 WA State Healthy Youth Survey, 24% of 8th and 12th graders and 30% of 10th graders said “they felt so sad or hopeless almost every day for the last 2 weeks or more in a row that they stopped doing some of their usual activities.” Approximately 15% of 6th, 8th and 12th graders and 17% of 10th graders said they had seriously considered killing themselves. Approximately 5% of youth in 6th, 8th, 10th and 12th grades reported they had made at least 1 attempt to kill themselves.

Having someone to turn to is an important service when teens are experiencing these pressures; yet 19% of 6th graders, 24% of 8th graders and approximately 28% of 10th and 12th graders said they did not or weren’t sure if they had adults they could turn to for help, which is why we established Teen Link, a teen-answered help line.

Nationally

Mental illness is the second leading cause of disability and premature death and accounts for over 15% of the burden of diseases in the U.S. It is intricately related to physical health. It is estimated that 19% of Americans will experience a mental illness sometime in their lifetime, according to the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services. For many people, their illness is never diagnosed or treated leading to problems sustaining employment or constructive relationships. According to the World Health Org, depression will be the #1 disability in the world by 2010. (SAVE.org)  Untreated depression is the leading cause of suicide.  According to the Surgeon General’s 2001 “National Strategy for Suicide Prevention” suicide is the eighth leading cause of death. Nearly 37,000 Americans die from suicide each year and experts believe there 8-25 attempts for each suicide. (SAVE.org)

One economic analysis estimated the total cost to be $111.3 billion, including medical expenses, work-related losses and quality of life losses; this doesn’t include the anguish that families experience.

Nationally suicide is the third leading cause of death among youth ages 10-24 and the second leading cause of death for people ages 25-34

Undiagnosed mental illness in youth is very high. According to the 2001 Surgeon General’s National Strategy for Suicide Prevention, “suicide is the third leading cause of death for youth ages 10-24.  More than 4,400 young people kill themselves each year.  More teens and young adults die from suicide than from cancer, heart disease, AIDS, birth defects, stroke, pneumonia, influenza and lung disease combined.“  More than three million U.S. teens have seriously considered suicide or attempted suicide and thirteen percent of youth ages 14-17 have considered suicide. Only 36% of those had received mental health treatment or counseling. (SAMSA, 2000)

When it comes to suicide, the facts are startling…

  • Every 42 seconds someone attempts suicide
  • Every 18 minutes someone dies by suicide
  • Nationally, an average of 80% of suicides are men
  • Five times as many men than women commit suicide; however, women attempt suicide 2-3 times as often as men
  • Approximately 57% of U.S. suicides are committed with a gun
  • The number of deaths from suicide each year is approximately the same as the number of deaths from AIDS
  • More than 90% of people who kill themselves have a diagnosable mental disorder, commonly a depressive disorder or a substance abuse disorder
  • The suicide rate in young people has been increasing dramatically over the last few decades.
  • In the United States, there is an average of one suicide among the elderly every 90 minutes
  • Between 35% and 40% of adults who commit suicide have some significant physical illness

Here are some organizations that provide information about suicide.

Suicide Prevention Resource Center:
www.sprc.org

SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration):
www.samhsa.gov

Office of the Surgeon General of the United States:
www.surgeongeneral.gov

The Surgeon General’s Call To Action To Prevent Suicide:
www.surgeongeneral.gov/library/calltoaction/default.htm

National Institute of Mental Health:
www.nimh.nih.gov

SPAN (Suicide Prevention Advocacy Network):
www.spanusa.org/

American Association of Suicidology (AAS):
www.suicidology.org

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention:
www.afsp.org