The government had announced yesterday a campaign to reduce the number of young men who commit suicide and that is one of the commonest causes of death among those aged 16 to 35 in the UK.
It was reported that last year 1,300 young men killed themselves. The government also explained that the rates have definitely fallen, but it is still much higher than the rates among the women. Reports indicate that in the peak age group of 30 - 39, at least three men kill themselves for every woman who takes her life.
The health minister Rosie Winterton while at a men's health conference, told that the government was committed to make sure that the men were more aware that help was available and they wanted more of them to seek it out. Explaining that the country has already a national suicide strategy and that the policy is definitely starting to have an impact, she said that there is a need to redouble the efforts in getting the young men to look after their mental well being and seek help when they need it.
She announced the launch of Reaching Out, which is a report of three pilot studies that encourage men to seek help. She explained that the studies had found reluctance among young men to go to the GP or engage in projects designed to help them in classroom-type settings especially those who had literacy problems or were more vulnerable. She said that the studies show that it was much easier to engage men in non-formal settings such as youth centers.
The reports explained that the young men usually report the underlying causes of mental ill health to be unemployment, crime, gang activity, social isolation and poor housing conditions. The reports also show that the majority of the young men have seemingly suggested that they do not trust health professionals to keep their problems confidential.
Dr Marcus Roberts, who heads the policy at the mental health charity Mind, welcomed the government's commitment to tacking the problem. He stated that the pilot studies have shown that solid investment and active outreach have the potential to make a real difference. He further stated that mental well being is an issue affecting everyone and young people are most often under their particular pressure.
He went on to state that the traditional services have not been catered so well for the needs of young men and so it's good to see the development of new
Marjorie Wallace, of the charity organization Sane, explained that young men as were all patients were at the greatest risk of suicide soon after they were discharged from hospital. She said that it was of concern that little is being done to offer care during the critical period. She said that a it was not only enough to develop good ideas but it was also important for people to implement them and to stay committed to them.