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Suicide not mental illness, can be averted with timely intervention

Suicide is not a mental illness and can be prevented if help is sought in time, say experts ahead of World Suicide Prevention on September 10.

health and fitness Updated: Sep 09, 2016 11:28 IST
Psychiatric difficulty like depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia etc are treatable, say experts.
Psychiatric difficulty like depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia etc are treatable, say experts.(Shutterstock)

This may come as a surprise to many but suicides are the most common cause of death in young adults in India. Also, nearly one million people commit suicide worldwide every year, say experts.

“Suicide is not a mental illness, but can be a consequence of an underlying psychiatric difficulty like depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, addiction or personality disorder, which may be treatable if timely help is provided,” said Sunil Mittal, Senior Consultant (Psychiatrist) and Director at Cosmos Institute of Mental Health and Behavioural Sciences (CIMBS) -- a city based mental healthcare service provider, in a statement on Thursday.

Untreated mood swings, recent life trauma, sudden calmness after mood swings, talking about suicide and making preparations to give away possessions may be red flag signs of potential risk for suicide.

If any such signs are noted, family members and next of kin must intervene and help the person suffering from suicidal ideation find timely help from mental health care experts, the doctors said.

“People attempt suicide when they are no longer able to bear the psychological pain and become overpowered by a feeling of hopelessness. Stressful life events like death of a loved one, financial loss, retirement, academic difficulties, ragging and relationship difficulties can be triggers for an act as serious as suicide,” added Shobhana Mittal, Consultant Psychiatrist at CIMBS.

Untreated mood swings, recent life trauma, talking about suicide etc are all signs of a potential risk for suicide. (Shutterstock)