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  • Writer's pictureErin Miller, MBA

September is Suicide Prevention Month

September is national suicide prevention month. Suicide is a topic that can be controversial due to the fact that many in the community that surrounds you have had a first-hand experience in the pain and heartache associated with suicide. Prevention is incredibly important in helping those who may be suffering in silence and will help shine a light of hope to those who need it the most.

The American Association of Suicidology believes we need focus on suicide prevention every day, of every year. And we can do this by continuously spreading awareness, advocating for research funding, developing innovative and effective treatment tools, being kind, and helping to educate others on things like resources and warning signs. (American Association of Suicidology, 2019)

During the month of September Crossroads Behavioral Health is dedicated to providing free suicide prevention training to the communities we serve. Every mental health clinician employed by CBHS has been trained and certified by the QPR institute. If your organization would like to receive education regarding suicide prevention please contact Crossroads at 641-782-8457 to schedule a training.

QPR stands for Question, Persuade, and Refer — the 3 simple steps anyone can learn to help save a life from suicide. Just as people trained in CPR and the Heimlich Maneuver help save thousands of lives each year, people trained in QPR learn how to recognize the warning signs of a suicide crisis and how to question, persuade, and refer someone to help. Each year thousands of Americans, like you, are saying "Yes" to saving the life of a friend, colleague, sibling, or neighbor. (QPR Institute, 2019)

Suicide is a more prevalent issue than you may think. According to the latest and most extensive survey performed by the AAS, Suicide ranks as the 10th leading cause of death in the US and it ranks as the 2nd leading cause of death for 15-34-year-olds (American Association of Suicidology, 2019). To put this in perspective this means that every 11 minutes 1 person kills or attempts to kill themselves in the US (American Association of Suicidology, 2019).

There are some warning signs that you should look for and the following are not always communicated directly or outwardly (American Association of Suicidology, 2019):

· Threatening to hurt or kill him or herself, or talking of wanting to hurt or kill him/herself; and or,

· Looking for ways to kill him/herself by seeking access to firearms, available pills, or other means; and/or,

· Talking or writing about death, dying or suicide, when these actions are out of the ordinary.

· Increased substance (alcohol or drug) use

· No reason for living; no sense of purpose in life

· Anxiety, agitation, unable to sleep or sleeping all of the time

· Feeling trapped – like there’s no way out

· Hopelessness

· Withdrawal from friends, family and society

· Rage, uncontrolled anger, seeking revenge

· Acting reckless or engaging in risky activities, seemingly without thinking

· Dramatic mood changes

· Giving away prized possessions or seeking long-term care for pets

If you know someone who is exhibiting warning signs please seek help for that person immediately. The following are some resources that can provide help:

- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255 or for online emotional support;

- Crisis Text Line (Text Home to 741 741);

- The Trevor Project 1-866-488-7386 or;

- Trans Lifeline 877-565-8860 or

- Crossroads Behavioral Health After Hours Crisis Line: 641-342-2914

Crossroads Behavioral Health provides new client walk in assessments on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 8AM-3PM and we will always create time for a crisis walk in or call. If you or a loved one need help please don’t hesitate to call Crossroads to receive the care you need. Crossroads will never turn away anyone if they are unable to pay at the time of your visit and will work out a financial plan specific to you!

Works Cited

American Association of Suicidology. (2019, September 16). Preventing Suicide Everyday. Retrieved from

QPR Institute. (2019, September 16). What is QPR? Retrieved from QPR Institute:

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