Suicide Claims Thousands, But Help Is Available

suicide prevention
A number of organizations provide assorted resources with the goal of preventing suicide.

Suicide is a leading cause of death in the U.S., presenting a major, preventable public health problem. More than 33,000 people end their own lives each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

According to Health North Texas, 11.6 of every 100,000 deaths in Dallas County are from suicide.

In September, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) focuses on reducing the stigma surrounding suicide and increasing awareness about suicide prevention.

“We want every Texan who’s facing a crisis, or knows someone who is, to know that you are not alone and help is available,” said HHS State Suicide Prevention Coordinator Tammy Weppleman. “It’s important that we share every resource at our disposal and have conversations about this serious public health issue.”

The most common warning signs of suicide include talking about or writing about suicide, expressing hopelessness or worthlessness, planning or looking for a way to kill themselves, increasing the use of substances, and withdrawing from family and friends.

If someone is at risk for suicide, get help immediately. Here are a few resources for assistance.

The Crisis Text Line provides free counseling through text messaging 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Text TX to 741741 for assistance.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, at 800-273-8255 (TALK), offers guidance and assistance for people and their loved ones experiencing thoughts of suicide.

The Texas Veterans + Family Alliance Grant Program enables communities to identify and address the mental health needs of veterans and their families.

The Texas Mental Health Program for Veterans is a community-based resource for veterans and their families.

HHS offers free Mental Health First Aid eight-hour courses to public school and higher education employees to help them recognize suicide risk factors and warning signs.

People can call the Local Mental Health Authority in their area to be connected to mental health services.

For more information about suicide prevention, visit the HHS Suicide Prevention webpage.

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