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Understanding suicide (Prevalence, causes, risk factors, prevention)

August 29, 2020 OVIYA EZHILVANAN 0 Comments

Understanding suicide (Prevalence, causes, risk factors, prevention)

Compiled by Oviya. E

   SUICIDE is a social issue. Empower people has taken the initiative to create awareness on suicide. Mental health experts have joined this webinar to speak on this alarming topic.

  Dr. Sharol Fernandes, consulting Psychiatrist, Ms. Anuradha Karegar, counseling Psychologist join us in the webinar. The panelists for this webinar are Sumati Rani and Amruta Khare. The webinar is moderated by Reema K Thunderbolt.

   Dr. Sharol started her session by stating that suicide is an act of killing oneself. It is a social problem and affects a community. Self-reservation is the act of doing anything to save oneself from a situation.

    The prevalence of suicide is increasing every day. Suicide is responsible for more deaths than malaria, breast cancer, war, or even homicide, according to the WHO. Close to 800 000 people die due to suicide every year. She presented the data of suicides nationally and globally.

   The most common methods of killing oneself are self -poisoning, hanging and firearms. It is important for us to know the methods in order to find out the preventive measures.

    Reasons for suicide arise in the following grounds:

·       Marital status

·       Education

·       Occupation

·       Family support

·       Psychiatric illness

People prone to these illnesses are more likely to attempt suicide:

·       Depression

·       Bipolar illness

·       Schizophrenia

·       People with substance use like alcohol misuse.

Precipitating factors/stressors:

·    Preceded by notable life events, in particular interpersonal or health-related events.

·    Negative lie events, stress, object loss, and negative interaction needs.

·    Other suicidal triggers include physical illness, bankruptcy, illicit relationships, and drug intoxication.

There are a few protective factors for one with suicidal thoughts. They are:

·       Relationship responsibilities

·       Children

·       Religious beliefs

·       Social and family support

·       Coping skills

Prevention for suicide:

·       Awareness

·       Early intervention

·       Treatment

·       Promote right coping strategies

·       Support groups

Ms. Anuradha started her presentation mentioning the importance of seeking help. She spoke about myths and misconceptions. Some of the myths are:

·       People who talk about suicide won’t really do it

·       Anyone who tries to kill themselves must be crazy

·       If someone is determined to kill themselves, nothing is going to stop them

·       People who die by suicide are people who were unwilling to seek help

·       Talking about suicide may give someone the idea.

She also discussed the do’s and don’ts. It is mandatory to get support at times of depression and anxiety.

          Examples of such supports are:

·       Professional help

·       Follow up on treatment

·       Be proactive

·       Encourage positive lifestyle changes

·       Make a safety plan

·       Remove potential means of suicide

·       Continue your support over the long haul.


It is advised to consult a Psychiatrist if one has a family history of suicide. It is not necessary if the individual does not face any signs.

Ms.Sumati brought to our notice how these issues are not tangible yet important. It is important to help people with depression and anxiety.

Ms. Amruta Khare spoke about media and its impact on mental health.

This session is a must-watch in order to create awareness against the evil in disguise-suicide.