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The loss of a loved one who has committed suicide can leave family and friends feeling its impact for the rest of their lives. While we will occasionally hear of someone’s suicide, we often don’t realize how staggering the numbers actually are. In 2010, the leading cause of death in the US was suicide; 105 people committed suicide each and every day, the effects of which have direct impact on every person who knew them. In addition to the emotional costs, completed suicide also resulted in medical costs and work-related losses of an estimated $34.6 billion.

It is important to understand the numbers related to completed suicides in order to truly grasp its impacts and further spread awareness. Through this awareness, and by removing stigma associated with mental health disorders, more individuals will feel able to ask for help when they need it most so they can receive the life-saving treatments which can make all the difference in their outcomes.

In the 2009 reporting year, sixteen states which reported data to the National Violent Death Reporting system stated that of those who had committed suicide, opiates were present 20.8% of the time, antidepressants 23%, and alcohol in 33.3% of cases. In regards to the presence of opiates, this figure also included cases where prescription medications or heroin were present at the time of testing.

In the data studied, it became apparent that completed suicides were more predominant in men than in women. Male suicides represent 79%, or four times that of women, of committed suicides in the US. Oddly enough, men are less likely to experience suicidal thoughts or ideation when compared to women.

Further study of the data determined that suicide was the 3rd leading cause of death for those aged 15-24, 2nd for those 25-34, the 4th leading cause for those 35-54, and 8th for 55-64 year olds. While the rates of suicide appear to diminish with age, these numbers are still very significant when you look at the bigger picture.

Completed suicides are the cause of death in one of every five youth aged 15 to 24. While more men committed suicide than women overall, female suicide rates for women aged 45-54 were at the highest rate and attributed to 9 of every 100,000 deaths. For men, the highest ranking rate was present in the age group over the age of 75 and was responsible 36 per 100,000 deaths. Overall rate of suicide for those aged 75 and older was 16.3 of every 100,000.

Ethnic groups’ socioeconomic factors also contribute to suicide rates and this is quite apparent through study of the research data. Suicide amongst Alaskan or American Natives was the 2nd leading cause of death for those aged 15-34, which is 2.5 times higher than the American average of that age group, or 12.2 for every 100,000.

The loss of a loved one who has committed suicide typical results in numerous psychological reactions, including depression and anxiety.  Because our treatment for depression and anxiety programs rely on evidence based practices, our Intensive Outpatient Program shares many common methods with other successful treatment methods.  The foundation of our treatment program for relies on the principles of the stages of change, cognitive behavioral therapy, solution focused treatment, skills training and identifying repetitive dysfunctional behavioral relationship patterns to promote recovery from depression and other mental health disorders.  In fact, our Intensive Outpatient Program in Memphis, TN that has been proven to be effective in the treatment of these disorders in six peer reviewed treatment outcome studies.   Our treatment center provides services to those who need more treatment than one hour a week, but less than 24 hour care, by providing three hours of treatment per day, three to five days per week, in an intensive outpatient setting. It is also important to keep in mind that women and men often experience depression differently and therefore the presence of depression may also appear differently based on gender. If you have lost a loved one to suicide and are showing signs of depression or anxiety, including PTSD, you should be assessed by a trained mental health professional who can help design a treatment plan for depression that can result in recovery.  Treatment for depression and anxiety can be highly successful.  People who have completed our program have reported very high consumer satisfaction scores and reviewsCall us at 901-682-6136 to schedule an appointment.