Help is available 24/7 for people struggling with thoughts of suicide

Jackson County, Ore.– The CDC reports there has been a 30 percent increase in suicides across the country since 1999.  And in states like Oregon with many rural areas, that number may be even higher.

NBC5 News spoke with Jackson County Mental Health about why that is.

“People have a hard time getting to services or thinking that they can’t get into services,” said Rick Rawlins, Crisis Services Manager with Jackson County Mental Health. “But if they know that services are readily available 24/7, that can then decrease the risk because then they are able to connect with a provider to talk about the suicide risk.”

Rawlins says suicide is the second leading cause of death for teens, but the rate is even higher for middle aged and elderly individuals.

He suggests the following if someone you know is contemplating suicide:

“They should directly ask that person, are they thinking of killing themselves? And if they are to not get freaked out about what they need to do, but first just listen to the person and be there and be able to support that person.”

At Jackson County Public Health, they offer walk-in services every day of the week regardless of insurance.

You can call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline anywhere, anytime, at 1-800-273-8255 or text 741-741 to be connected with a counselor immediately.

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