‘Working Together to Prevent Suicide’ – World Suicide Prevention Day

‘Working Together to Prevent Suicide’ – World Suicide Prevention Day

Author -  Dr. Lakshmi Venkataraman, MD
Medically Reviewed by 
The Medindia Medical Review Team on September 9, 2019 at 5:51 PM
  • World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD) is observed on the 10th September to raise awareness about suicide prevention
  • Suicide is one of the leading causes of death and remains a universal challenge. We must do what we can to prevent people from taking this extreme step
  • Around 800,00 deaths are lost annually, which means there is a suicide every 40 seconds
  • Suicide accounts for more deaths than war and murder together
  • Just take 5 minutes of your time to become aware of how you can help prevent suicide and save a life

World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD) is observed on the 10th September by the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP). The main objective of the campaign is to raise awareness about suicide prevention and ways to avoid self-harm.

History of World Suicide Prevention Day

The first World Suicide Prevention Day was observed on the 10th September 2003 and founded by the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) in partnership with the WHO to raise and spread awareness about suicide prevention. Since then, every year activities, fundraisers, suicide prevention campaigns and initiatives are undertaken by individuals, communities, health personnel to reach the message far and wide and save precious lives.

Take 5 Minutes to Save A Life

Just take 5 minutes of your time to learn 5 things to prevent suicide and save a life

Listen to this article

Recognize the Signs of a Suicidal Person
  • Low mood, depression, being aloof and remains withdrawn
  • Feeling hopeless, lonely, worthless and desperate
  • Avoid taking part in company and fun activities
  • Spells of crying
  • Appears anxious and reports having sleep problems
  • No interest in anything
  • Talking about taking one's life
  • Excessive alcohol or drug use
Listen without Judging
  • Reach out to help
  • Talk to them and make them open out
  • Assure them that you're not judging them
  • Tell them you will be there for them if they need help
  • Get in touch with them always and enquire how they are doing
Ways of Self-Care
Reach Out for Help
  • Realize you are not alone
  • Reach out to a person you trust or love to help you
  • Call a helpline to speak to a mental health professional
Spread the Message Far & Wide
  • Spread the Message of 'Take 5 minutes' as much as possible to prevent suicide deaths

Things We Can Do To Create Awareness About Suicide Prevention

  • Download campaign material and posters from the official website and share widely on social media
  • Share messages about suicide prevention and Take 5 widely on social media such as Twitter and Facebook
  • Ask a person who has successfully overcome depression and suicidal behavior to share his personal experiences on how to cope with suicidal thoughts, and other stressful and sad situations
  • Print and visual media should carry and broadcast talks and discussions with experts on managing stress and preventing suicidal thoughts and ideas
  • Mental health professionals should offer free counseling to people with symptoms of suicidal behavior and encourage depressed persons and their families to seek help as soon as possible
  • Organize a marathon, sports or fun activity and raise funds and donate to a charity involved in suicide prevention or for research
  • Carrying messages about suicide prevention in prominent places in your neighborhood can save millions of lives from committing suicide
  • Distribute pamphlets containing information about preventing suicide
  • Organizing talks or webinars in schools and corporate organizations to educate about depression, stress management, and suicide prevention
  • Governments and local administration must make accessible mental health care to one and all

Suicide - Facts & Figures

  • Suicide is one of the top 20 causes of death globally
  • For every 40 seconds, someone loses their life to suicide
  • Suicidal behavior includes suicide as well as suicidal attempts and suicidal ideas
  • For every suicide, there are at least 25 suicide attempts and many more persons having suicidal thoughts
  • Suicide results from a combination of genetic, sociocultural, psychological, and other risk factors as well as following traumatic experience or loss
  • Suicidal behavior can affect anyone irrespective of age, sex, race or ethnicity
  • Preventing suicide requires a multilevel and multidisciplinary approach
In summary, suicide can be prevented, and we should learn to recognize suicidal behavior in others as well as ourselves and take appropriate steps to prevent suicide and save a life. Let us all pledge to support and spread the message of the World Suicide Prevention Day campaign and make a difference.

References :
  1. About Take 5 to Save Lives - (
  2. World Suicide Prevention Day - (
  3. WSPD Suggested Activities - (
  4. World Suicide Prevention Day - (

Source: Medindia
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