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BY SIBUSISIWE NYANDA
Uncovered FEELING LOW THIS WEEK MARKS TEEN SUICIDE PREVENTION WEEK. WE SPOKE TO LOVELIFE AND SOUTH AFRICAN DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY GROUP (SADAG) ABOUT DEPRESSION AND SUICIDE
Speak to your friend and ask them how they are doing. Listen to your friend's problems and encourage them to get help as soon as possible. Don't try to argue anyone out of suicide, rather let the person know that you care and understand, and that they are not alone. Avoid the temptation to say: "You have so much
e World Health Organisation as oun at a suicide occurs every 40 seconds and an attempt is made every three seconds. In South Africa 60 % of people who commit suicide are depressed. According to SADAG, about one in five teens attempts suicide. 9,5 % of all teen deaths in South Africa are due to suicide. Reasons for suicide in rural areas tend to differ from those in urban areas. Teens in rural areas may commit suicide for the following reasons: HIV and Aids, poverty, the burden of chronic illness and relationship issues. Teens in urban areas may commit suicide because of family problems, relationship issues, learning difficulties, substance abuse and
I feel guilty I have low self-esteem I have failed myself and/or my family I have lost interest in my hobbies I would rather be alone I often feel restless or tired I have trouble concentrating I have trouble sleeping I sleep too much My appetite has increased or decreased
u ying among o er ings. Boys are more likely to commit suicide and use some of the following methods: hanging themselves, using guns and gassing. Gids often attempt suicide using pills and poisons. There are various resources in communities which offer help and support to teens - school counsellors, support groups, nurses, social workers, clinics, hospitals, youth centres, and so forth. Try to find out about your local centres and how to get involved. One of the greatest causes of suicide among teenagers is depression, so it's important to talk to a close friend, your parents or a professional if you suspect you struggle with depression.
My thoughts race, I can't slow my mind down I often think about death I often think about suicide I enjoy dangerous activities I use drugs and/or alcohol on a regular basis If you have (or had) four or more of these feelings and they last longer than two weeks, you may have depression. It's important that you talk to someone about your feelings.
to live for" or "suicide will hurt your family". Speak to a teacher you trust or a parent. If there's nobody to talk to, call a counsellor at SADAG or LOVELIFE. It's more important to save your friend's life than to keep a secret!
HERE ARE SOME DANGER SIGNS TO LOOK OUT FOR
*Previous suicide attempts: Between 20 and 50 % of people who kill themselves have previously attempted suicide. Those who make serious suicide attempts are at much greater risk of actually taking their lives. * Talking about suicide: People who commit suicide often talk about it directly or indirectly. Be alert to statements such as, "My family would be better off without me". * Depression: Although most depressed people are not suicidal, most suicidal people are depressed. Serious depression can be manifested in obvious sadness, but often it's expressed instead as a loss of pleasure in activities that had once been enjoyable.
TICK ANY OF THESE IF THEY APPLY TO YOU
WHAT TO DO IF YOU SUSPECT SOMEONE CLOSE TO YOU MIGHT BE SUICIDAL
WHAT TO DO IN CASE OF A CRISIS *Take the person to an emergency room or a walk-in clinic. *DO NOT leave the person alone until help is available. *Remove anything harmful, which could be used for suicide, from the person.
LOVELIFE Parents can call this number for help: 0800-121-100 (toll-free from landline) Youth line: 0800-121-900 (toll-free from landline) If you desperately need to talk to someone but you don't have airtime or you prefer to be outside the house to talk, send a "please call me" to the following numbers: Vodacom: *140*0833231023#
MTN: *121 *0823231023# Cell C: *111 *0823231023# or visit hitp://www.lovelife.org.za H AFRICAN DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY GROUP Call a counsellor at SADAG on 0800-121-314 or 0800-212-223 for free telephonic counselling. SMS 31393 and a counsellor will call you. hitp://www.sadag.co.za