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Teen Suicide is a major killer of teenagers today. It is the third leading cause of death in all teens’ ages 15-19 and the second leading cause of death in ages 19-24. Verbalizing about this more gives ways to help prevent teen suicide, such as identifying disorders they may have and providing them with the proper treatment be fore it gets out of hand. The hard part is identifying the disorders. The only people that can really identify them is family and close friends, and in many cases people many not know the seriousness of it or fear that it might just be true. Another problem is that if you are not educated in the areas of mind it may be a bit harder to identify the problem.
The most common symptoms that lead to suicide are depression, anxiety disorders and substance abuse. Depression is a mood disorder characterized by over whelming feelings of sadness, lack of interest in activities, and often times excessive guilt or feelings of worthlessness. Depression is not something that a person can help and if they could, they would not even want to. It does no good to tell someone who is depressed and has thoughts of suicide that,” Things really are not that bad”; that just indicates to them that you can not see nor understand what they are going through. Most people in these situations want help but they may discourage obtaining it from someone due to the embarrassment of the issue. Making sure that your friends and family are all right but if they are not, they should be shown what help they can acquire by just coming forward.
Anxiety disorders are a bit more complex but they need to be identified cause they can be dangerous. Anxiety is a disorder where anxiety is a characteristic feature or the avoidance of anxiety motivates abnormal behavior and can not function in everyday life because the anxiety is too great.
The easiest of the three to explain is Substance abuse. This is the pattern of drug use that diminishes the ability to fulfill responsibilities at home or at work or even school, that leads in repeated use of drug menacing situations, which results to legal difficulties related to narcotic use. Ultimately chronic abuse of alcohol and drugs may lead to death; About 100,000 Americans die each year as a result of alcohol with other drugs including heart failure, pneumonia, automobile accidents, and suicide. The highest risk for suicide due to heavy drinking is boys 17-19 who is depressed and drinks a lot. Substance abuse as all of the disorders are very dangerous if not treated and in some substance abuse cases it gets out of which results in problems with the law and even violence may occur.
Each disorder mentioned (depression, anxiety, and substance abuse) are all leading causes to teen suicide and the more society becomes involved the less teens take their own lives because no one is showing them another route.
Treatment significantly reduces teen suicide but the actual treatment itself could be modified. They do confidential screening of high school student for risk factors such as previous suicide attempts. To say that these testers know if they had previous suicide attempts or if they are just lying is just an unrealistic statement. The few students that do come forward it will work for but what about all the others that did not speak out. One way of detecting this early is that all schools make the students go to the school psychologist from early adolescents all the way through high school. This is so that the psychologist know of him/her and the students understand that you don’t have to be crazy or mentally challenged to go and speak to someone if something is disturbing them. It is always a nice thing as a teenager to know that some one stable is always there to talk and help you the best they know how.
Start to teach the positive effects of the school psychologist at an early age can only repair the communication gap. By the time the thoughts of suicide come about they have someone that can first notice if they have the symptoms of any disorder and second help them get through it. In my high school I was involved I a group called SMILE it stood for students making it a little easier for underclassman. We were twelve seniors and we held confidential groups in which we talked about problems or situations that this underclassman may be undergoing. This is a great thing to have in High Schools today because it is the students that are facing the same problems or faced the same kinds of problems a short time ago, so it is still fresh in our minds. Something else that may help would be having classes for parents and guardians to talk about the different disorders and how they come about. The warning signs are the most important because it may even help you to notice it in your child’s friend. The loss of a friend for a teen is something so life altering that no good parent would want to put his or her children through such tragedy and heartache.
An example of parents needing to care more is the Littleton Massacre. Teenagers that seemed somewhat “normal” (smart and respectable) kids turned into serial killers resulting in their own planned suicide. This should be a cry of help from not just these isolated children but from all adolescents. Parents neglecting their children are only one half the problem the other half is the world surrounding the child. Parents and teachers should not assume that the child is OK and they should ask and know that they are in the best way they can. It is scary to think that parents today can neglect their flesh and blood like that. Youths come across many disorders and if left untreated and uneducated they are powerless to the control it has over their minds. For those two children to do what they did in Littleton had to be that they might have been feeling major depression for some time being that they planned to kill themselves one year in advance. Some parents think that just because they provide their children with cars, clothes and money means that they take good care of them, when in actuality money is not the root of their evil doings. One of the boys drove a new BMW and the other was no where near the lower class. Parents need to know and understand their children as well as they can and guide them in learning how to make the right decisions in life so that they can grow up to be functional adults.
Being a teenager, stresses and the struggles that we sometimes seem unbearable and unfixable. I know that this recent year was one of the hardest for me. I had many changes occur in my life that I could not deal with it. I felt like I had nobody there to help me. Due to this I was definitely in a depression needed some sort of help. Luckily, I was not that bad off, my true friends showed me why I am here, and why there is no way I would ever leave. It is a horrible experience to go through, you feel alone and nobody understands you. I was lucky to have my family and friends, although I do not always sit there and talk about what is bothering me. I know that if I needed them they would be there for me no matter what obstacle I am facing or was about to face. Now I know that if I felt that horrible and depressed for what was going on in my life I can only imagine how many other teens are out their that feel the same or even worse than I did. I am sure many of the teenagers in the world do not have someone that could notice a problem and give the help needed.
As a society, we need to do something about teen suicides and education is the beginning. . I now know how to recognize the symptoms, why people choose to die over a problem, and how to get a friend help. If the knowledge I have acquired through my observations can help but only one person, then that proves that the more you know if a direct result of the power in education.
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