September is National Suicide Prevention and Awareness month and Wright Memorial Hospital’s Senior Life Solutions program is working to raise awareness. According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, an average of 129 deaths by suicide occur per day and there are an estimated 1,400,000 suicide attempts per year. Talk of suicide should never be dismissed. If you or someone you know is thinking of suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
Wright Memorial Hospital’s Senior Life Solutions is an intensive outpatient group therapy program designed to meet the unique needs of older adults suffering from symptoms of anxiety and depression often related to aging. The Senior Life Solutions program staff is trained in the use of standardized, evidence-based tools for screening patients at risk of suicide. In addition, the staff assists the patient to create a plan to prevent future suicide attempts or suicidal thoughts.
To help raise awareness for Suicide Prevention Month, a proclamation will be signed by Trenton Mayor Linda Crooks on Tuesday, September 10, designating September as Suicide Prevention Month in Trenton. On that day, Senior Life Solutions will be hosting two walks on the hospital’s walking trail for community members and employees to join in on creating awareness for suicide prevention. The first walk will be held from 9 – 9:30 a.m., and the second from 3 – 3:30 p.m. Community members are also encouraged to wear teal, which is the national color used for suicide prevention and awareness.
“Raising awareness is an important piece in reducing the risk of suicide,” said Robin Dennert, program director, Wright Memorial Hospital Senior Life Solutions. “The more people aware of warning signs and where to reach out for help, the greater the possibility we have to reduce suicide.”
Patients may benefit from the Senior Life Solutions program if they recently experienced a traumatic event, are grieving the loss of a loved one, have experienced changes in sleep, appetite, or mood, or have lost interest in previously enjoyed activities. Referrals to the program can be made by anyone, including a patient’s physician, family member, self-referral, or another healthcare professional.
For more information, call the Wright Memorial’s Senior Life Solutions program at 660-357-4730.