By Sarah Stanford. Walk into any high school and you can be confident that there are young people who self-harm. Research suggests that around one in ten teens will self-harm at least once. That equates to 2-3 students per classroom. So we know that self-harm is fairly common. What is self-harm? The most common form… Continue reading Self harm by Australian high school students: latest research on who might do it and how to help
By Tiago Zortea. In 2002, an important epidemiological study on the global perspective on suicide was published by Bertolote and Fleischmann . Among the interesting data presented, a graph on the differences of suicide rates according to religion affiliation was included (see graph below). From a quick look at the graph, it would seem that… Continue reading Is religion protective against suicidal behaviour for LGBT individuals?
By Tiago Zortea. The World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD) 2017 campaign theme is “Take a minute, change a life”. You might wonder if this is really possible, since suicidal thoughts and behaviours are such complex phenomena to be understood. Indeed, research has shown that suicidal thoughts and behaviours are associated with feelings of entrapment … Continue reading Can a life be changed with a minute?: Suicide prevention, complexity and change
By Kirsten Russell. Suicide continues to be a major public health concern worldwide, and is one of the leading causes of death in young people aged 15-24 (World Health Organisation, 2014). University students represent a particularly high risk group for the development of suicidal thoughts and behaviours. A survey conducted by NUS in 2013 highlighted… Continue reading The importance of starting a conversation about suicide: Advice for supporting postgraduate peers
By Olivia Kirtley. Today is World Suicide Prevention Day. Last week the World Health Organization (WHO) released the first ever World Suicide Report, showing that around 800,000 people die by suicide each year. In fact, around the world, one person will die by suicide every 40 seconds, which means in the time it’s taken me… Continue reading Suicide Prevention: We Need Everyone
By Olivia Kirtley. As a child, I grew up watching the Royal Institution Christmas Lectures on TV and feeling a tremendous sense of excitement as these famous scientists submerged PhD students in ice water baths, cuddled lemurs and dissected brains, all in the name of public engagement with science. During my PhD, I’ve been on… Continue reading We need to talk about *******: Public engagement for “taboo” topics
By Olivia Kirtley. It is estimated that more than 800,000 individuals die globally each year as a result of suicide and for those aged 15-29 years old, suicide is the second leading worldwide cause of death after road traffic accidents 1. But we don’t whisper about car accidents, or exchange sideways glances when someone mentions… Continue reading The S Word: Talking About Suicide
By Olivia Kirtley. Today is World Suicide Prevention Day and around the world people are raising awareness of suicide prevention. The theme for this year is ‘reaching out, saving lives’. But what is the reach of suicide, and what does reaching out do? The Reach Every year, more than 800,000 people die by suicide around… Continue reading The Reach and Reaching Out of Suicide
By Tiago Zortea. Ten years ago, in the second year of my undergraduate course in Psychology, I came across a short book chapter that caused me to rethink many of the ways in which I understood mental health: The actress, the priest, and the psychoanalyst: The knife sharpeners, written by the Brazilian Professor of Social… Continue reading On sharpening knives, stigma and mental health
By Tiago Zortea. As a PhD student carrying out research in suicidality, I am recurrently asked why people take their own lives. The thing is, there is not an obvious, quick, or complete answer. Suicide is a complex phenomenon, and it involves biological, psychological and social factors that interact with each other, and these interactions… Continue reading Suicide Prevention: From Illness and Risk Factors, to Thoughts and Actions
By Tiago Zortea. “Ah look at all the lonely people! All the lonely people Where do they all come from? All the lonely people Where do they all belong?” The thought provoking, sad, and very reflective Beatles’ song, “Eleanor Rigby” shocked me when I listened to it for the first time many years ago. For… Continue reading Eleanor Rigby, Loneliness, and Suicide
By Tiago Zortea. This is an understandable concern. Suicide is a delicate issue since it involves suffering, emotional pain, and sometimes stigma for those who have lost loved ones through suicide or feel suicidal themselves . In addition, there is a well-known phenomenon called the “Werther effect” (or copycat suicide) where a person bases a… Continue reading Is it dangerous to ask or talk about suicide?
By Tiago Zortea. Every year, the 10th of September marks world suicide prevention day, with thousands of people across the globe calling for action to reduce deaths by suicide and save lives . Suicide prevention strategies can be implemented at several different levels with interventions including: (i) restricting individuals’ access to the means of suicide,… Continue reading Suicide prevention at the individual level: The role of empathy in saving lives
By Katerina Kavalidou. “No matter what you are going through, there is help out there; suicide is not the solution” The above is an important message from Professor Rory O’Connor, an expert on suicide research and prevention, regarding the recent airing of 13 Reasons Why, a TV series about a teenage girl’s suicide. Reading this,… Continue reading On 13 Reasons Why: Acknowledging those working in suicide prevention
By Emma Nielsen. We all say things that we don’t mean sometimes. Perhaps the time that you snapped at the end of a long day or said that deliberately hurtful comment in the heat of an argument. Sometimes these instances are easily recognisable (perhaps easily apologised for). However, often our language conveys more subtle messages… Continue reading Mind your ‘C’s and ‘S’s: The Language of Self-harm and Suicide (and why it matters)
By Emma Nielsen. Sometimes it feels like the world is full of a lot of rules: don’t walk on the grass, eat five portions of fruit and veg a day, double space after a period if (and only if) that full stop marks the end of the sentence in APA formatting. Sometimes this guidance feels… Continue reading Media Matters: The impact of media reporting of suicide