The latest report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) makes a startling revelation regarding the suicide trends in the U.S. The 2016 report indicates that 9.8 million adults aged 18 or older, had seriously considered taking their lives in the past year, which constitutes 4 percent of the total adult population. Despite the policy makers and researchers ramping up efforts to make lives of Americans better, the number of suicides has remained more or less constant in the past eight years rather than reducing.
The study also tried to assess if adults who ideated about suicide in the past 12 months had actually tried to put their plan into practice. Here are the findings:
- 8 million (1.1 percent of adults) had made suicide plans.
- 3 million adults attempted suicide including 1 million who planned for it and 0.3 million adults who did not.
In other words, “about one-fourth of adults who had serious thoughts of suicide made suicide plans, and about 1 in 7 adults who had serious thoughts of suicide made a suicide attempt.”
Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in America. Many upset with the upheavals in life could have temporary thoughts of killing themselves but forget about this sooner or later. However, sometimes these suicide ideation thoughts get translated into practice.
The report categorized serious thoughts of suicide, plans and attempts in different age groups. The details are as follows:
- An estimated 3 million youngsters aged 18 to 25 had serious thoughts of committing suicide in the past year. This represents 8 percent of young adults. It also reported that nearly 981,000 youngsters in the same age group had made suicide plans.
- Nearly 4.2 million adults aged 26 to 49 seriously thought about committing suicide in the past year, representing 4.2 percent of adults in this age group. An estimated 1.3 million adults in the same age group planned their suicide.
- 6 million adults aged 50 or older were reported to have serious thoughts of suicide in the past year and nearly 504,000 adults in the same age group had made plans to kill themselves.
Recognizing red flags
Suicide is a tragic loss of human life. It also severely affects the community and families left behind to grieve. A single suicide can spiral a family into untold miseries. Sometimes, there is a domino effect at play, with another family member falling prey to the same urge. The risks of other family members getting afflicted with mental health conditions such as depression, PTSD and anxiety are also exacerbated.
Most people are ready to talk about what is going wrong in their lives and why they ideate about putting it to an end. In most tragic incidents, the red flags are evident long before the actual act happens. It is, therefore, essential to recognize them in time and prevent the untimely loss of a productive life. Some signs that if recognized in time could help save a life are:
- Posting status updates about killing oneself on social media accounts
- Social withdrawal and loss of interest in activities and hobbies
- Sleeping too much or too little
- Substance abuse and risk-taking behavior
- Google searches using keywords like ‘stress,’ ‘depression,’ ‘ suicide’ and safe means for killing oneself
- Poor self-image and extreme mood swings
- Physical symptoms such as loss of weight, loss of appetite and fatigue
Reaching out for help
Everyone experiences stress in day-to-day life but suicide is not the answer to life’s miseries. Staying healthy, happy and wise can give immense boost to one’s confidence and create positivity in fighting problems and emerging victorious. If negative thoughts last longer than usual, one should immediately seek a mental health expert’s help.
Sovereign Health is a leading provider of mental health treatment services for both adults and adolescents. If you suspect that your loved one manifests any of the symptoms underlined above, it is best to consult an expert for suicidal ideation disorder treatment in Los Angeles. Call our 24/7 helpline 866-973-7164 or chat with a trained specialist to know about our state-of-the-art suicidal ideation disorder treatment centers in Los Angeles offering holistic recovery programs.