HHS recognizes National Awareness Month on Suicide Prevention

Press release

Texas Human Services and Health Commission

HHS Executive Commissioner

Date:September 7, 2021

HHS recognizes National Awareness Month on Suicide Prevention

AUSTIN – During the month of September, the Texas Commission on Human Services and Health is working to reduce the stigma surrounding suicide and raise awareness about suicide prevention. HHSC encourages Texans to be aware of available resources and to become aware of the common warning signs of suicide.

“We want all Texans facing a crisis or to know someone who knows you’re not alone and that help is available,” said Tammy Weppleman, HHS’s state suicide prevention coordinator. “It’s important that we share all the resources at our disposal and that we talk about this serious public health issue.”

In 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that suicide was the second leading cause of death for Texans ages 10 to 34 and that nearly 4,000 people were lost due to suicides statewide.

The most common warning signs of suicide include talking or writing about suicide, expressing hopelessness or futility, planning or looking for ways to kill yourself, increasing substance use, and withdrawing from family and friends.

If someone is at risk of suicide, it is important to act right away, offer hope, and get help as soon as possible. The National Lifetime Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255 (800-273-TALK) is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to connect people in crisis and affected family members with emotional support counselors and others. services.

In addition to the crisis line, Texas highlights other resources to help Texans who need it:

  • The crisis text line provides access to free advice via text messages 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Text 741741 for help.
  • The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, at 800-273-8255 (TALK), offers guidance and help to people and their loved ones who may be experiencing suicidal thoughts.
    • Dedicated line for veterans: press 1.
    • For deaf and hard of hearing people: use your preferred broadcast service or call 711 and 800-273-8255.
    • For Spanish speakers: The National Suicide Prevention Network: 888-628-9454.
  • The Suicide Prevention Card Wallet, in English (PDF) and Spanish (PDF), quickly identifies warning signs and specific steps to help someone in trouble.
  • The Texas Veterans + Family Alliance grant program allows communities to identify and address the mental health needs of veterans and their families.
  • The Texas Veterans Mental Health Program is a community resource for veterans and their families struggling with suicide.
  • HHS offers free eight-hour mental health first aid courses to public school and higher education employees to help them recognize the risk factors and warning signs of a person in a situation of mental health. anxiety and how they can come to help them and connect them with resources.
  • People can call the local mental health authority in their area to connect to mental health services.

For more information on suicide prevention, visit the HHS Suicide Prevention website.

Credit – https://www.hhs.texas.gov/about-hhs/communications-events/news/2021/09/hhs-recognizes-national-suicide-prevention-awareness-month