– yes such a confronting word, however more confronting is the statistics associated with this word.
Did you know, In 2016, the suicide rate in Australia was 11.7 deaths per 100,000 people, up from 10.6 per 100,000 people in 2007. … In 2016, the standardised death rate for males was 17.8 deaths per 100,000 people, while for females it was 5.8 deaths per 100,000 people.
That’s more than eight people every single day. One person every three hours.
That’s quite a large number wouldn’t you agree?
So why is the suicide rate rising?
Suicide is a prominent concern. Over a five year period from 2012 to 2016, the average number of suicide deaths per year was 2,795.
Suicide rates reduced across many age groups, including a moderate reduction in suicide rates for males in the high risk age groups of 35-49 years. There were modest increases from 2015 to 2016 in suicide rates for other age groups however, including males 15-24 years and females 20-34 years.
For males: The highest age-specific suicide number in 2016 was observed in the 85+ age group (34.0 per 100,000) with 61 deaths. This number was considerably higher than the age-specific suicides observed in all other age groups, with the next highest age-specific suicide rates being in the 30-34, 40-44 and 35-39 year age groups (27.5, 27.2 and 24.8 per 100,000 respectively). Those of a younger age were associated with the lowest age-specific rates (0-14 year age group: 0.4per 100,000; 15-19 year age group: 13.4 per 100,000).
For females: The highest age-specific suicide in 2016 was observed in the 50-54 age group with 82 deaths (10.4 per 100,000), followed by the 40-44, 45-49 and 30-34 age groups (8.5, 8.3 and 8.3 per 100,000 respectively).
The lowest age-specific suicide for females was observed in the 0-14 age group with 7 deaths (0.3 per 100,000) followed by those aged between 65-69 and then 15-19 age group (4.1 and 5.0 100,000 respectively).
Social media can have either negative or positive effects, Tom Simon, an author of the report and associate director for science in the division of violence protection at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported.
Cyberbullying and harmful content might push a vulnerable teen toward self-harm, yet “social media can help increase connections between people, and it’s an opportunity to correct myths about suicide and to allow people to access prevention resources and materials.”
Dorian A. Lamis, an assistant professor in the department of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Emory University School of Medicine/Grady Health System, theorized that use of social media and cyberbullying may affect teenage girls more than boys, resulting in rising suicide deaths among older teen girls.
“Some research has suggested that the timing of puberty in girls is a contributing factor for the increased suicide rate,” has also been reported. Puberty starts as early as 8 in some girls. The psychosocial and physical changes may leave girls “vulnerable to depression, anxiety and other psychiatric disorders earlier on in life.” These known risk factors for suicide may catch up with a girl as she grows older.
There is not one factor that is a cause for suicide. It is not a weakness nor is it because of mental health.
Suicide affects many people and it is sometimes seen as selfish but no one should be judging because it has many repercussions.
Sometimes suicide is a result of bullying or seen as a way for the person committing suicide to get away from a certain situation an escape if you may like to think of it that way. They may be feeling isolated, scared, weak, alone, unhappy, stressed, fearful or overwhelmed. There are no exact reasons as to why someone may contemplate suicide. It’s their decision and we unfortunately on most occasions cannot change it.
No one should ‘chime in’ on negativity about suicide, no one knows what the person has been though, is experiencing or dealing with.
What we do know is that the rate in which suicide is rising, is concerning. Unfortunately the above statistics are not current, and suicide is not often spoken about. There should be no embarrassment associated with the word. We should be more aware of circumstances and situations where our friends, family and loved ones may need us.
In today’s society, we all seem quite wrapped up in our own worlds. Disconnected some may say or selfish to our surroundings. I believe that we need to be more aware and connected with those closest to us. Take not of Friends and family behaviour. Offer to listen to those whom may need to talk. Often people will bottle up their thoughts and feelings in fear of judgment.
Who are we to judge?
One persons situation may change, just by having a listening ear. Or a hand to hold, or comfort in knowing that they are valued and not alone.
There is help if you need it.
Lifeline within Australia 13 11 14
Wesley Mission Australia
Or if you would like to email me confidentially, my email is – firstname.lastname@example.org
Remember ‘Every Life Matters’.
It doesn’t take much to ask ‘Are you ok?’
‘How are you?’ These 2 questions may just change someone’s feelings and life.