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World Suicide Prevention Day, 10 Sept 2023 – Understanding Its Importance, Theme, and History
In a world where mental health and well-being are paramount concerns, World Suicide Prevention Day holds a crucial place on the global calendar.
Celebrated annually on September 10th, this day serves as a poignant reminder of the importance of mental health, and it’s a time to raise awareness about the critical issue of suicide prevention.
The Significance of World Suicide Prevention Day
World Suicide Prevention Day, often abbreviated as WSPD, is a day dedicated to promoting awareness and action surrounding suicide prevention.
It provides an opportunity for individuals, communities, and organizations to come together and shed light on the often stigmatized topic of suicide.
By acknowledging the significance of this day, we emphasize the value of mental health, destigmatize conversations around suicide, and encourage those in need to seek help.
Theme for World Suicide Prevention Day 2023
From 2021 to 2023, the triennial theme for World Suicide Prevention Day is ‘Creating Hope Through Action.’
This theme carries a profound message, serving as both a rallying call and a poignant reminder that there is an alternative to suicide, and it lies within our actions.
Through our collective efforts, we can kindle hope and bolster prevention.
By embracing the concept of creating hope through action, we send a clear message to those grappling with suicidal thoughts: there is hope, and we genuinely care, ready to extend our support.
It underscores that our actions, regardless of their scale, have the potential to infuse hope into the lives of those facing despair.
Above all, this theme underscores the critical importance of suicide prevention as a public health imperative.
Urgent action is needed to reduce suicide mortality rates, and the World Health Organization (WHO), in collaboration with its partners, remains committed to assisting countries in taking concrete steps toward achieving this vital goal.”
It emphasizes the power of human connections, open communication, and the act of caring for one another in times of crisis.
Shocking Facts about Suicides in India:
According to study by the International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS), Deonar, whose research paper ‘Changing pattern of suicide deaths in India’ was recently published in ‘The Lancet Regional Health Southeast Asia’:
Low Suicide rate in women:
- The rate of suicide among Indian men is 2.5 times of that among women,
- Low suicide among women might indicate better coping mechanisms for dealing with stress,” said the paper with two supportive datapoints. Firstly, married women made up for 8.7% of the people who died by suicide as compared to men who made up for 24.3%. “Secondly, that with education, the rate of suicide among women declined, but not so with men.
- India ranks among the countries with the highest number of female suicides.
Family Issue a trigger:
- Every third of the victims had family issues that acted as a trigger.
Economic Insecurity a trigger:
- Economic insecurity has emerged as a big trigger too: for instance, there has been 200% rise in the suicide rate of daily wage earners from 2014 to 2021.
According to report of The National Crime Records Bureau’s (NCRB’s) Accidental Deaths and Suicide in India (ADSI) report 2021:
- Student suicides had gone up drastically during the Covid-19pandemic in 2020 and 2021 and have been steadily rising in the last five years.
- Over 13,000 students died by in 2021 in India at the rate of more than 35 every day, a rise of 4.5% from the 12,526 deaths in 2020 with 864 out of 10,732 suicides being due to “failure in examination”
- The highest increase of 16.73% was recorded by “self-employed persons”.
Causes of Suicide: Family Problems (excluding marriage-related issues) accounted for 33.2% of cases. Marriage-Related Problems were cited in 4.8% of suicides. Illness was a factor in 18.6% of cases.
- Regional Insights:In 2021, Maharashtra had highest suicide cases, followed by Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh. Maharashtra contributed 13.5% to the total national suicide tally for 2021.
- Union Territories: Delhi recorded the highest number of suicides, with a total of 2,840 cases reported.
History of World Suicide Prevention Day
The history of World Suicide Prevention Day dates back to the year 2003 when it was first observed by the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO).
Since then, it has gained global recognition and momentum.
It’s a day to remember those we have lost to suicide, support those who may be struggling, and work collectively to prevent future tragedies.
How World Suicide Prevention Day is Celebrated
World Suicide Prevention Day is celebrated worldwide through a multitude of events and activities.
Communities often organize awareness campaigns, educational seminars, and outreach programs.
Social media plays a significant role in raising awareness, with individuals and organizations using hashtags like #WorldSuicidePreventionDay to spread messages of hope and support.
It’s also a day for individuals to reach out to friends and loved ones who may be struggling, offering a listening ear and encouraging them to seek help if needed.
As we approach World Suicide Prevention Day 2023, let us remember that suicide prevention is not the responsibility of a single day but a year-round commitment.
By understanding its significance, embracing the theme of building resilience, and honoring its history, we can collectively make strides toward a world where mental health is prioritized, and the stigma surrounding suicide is eliminated.
In conclusion, World Suicide Prevention Day is an annual reminder of the importance of mental health and suicide prevention.
It is a day to come together as a global community, spread awareness, and show support for those who may be struggling.
By connecting, communicating, and caring, we can build resilience and work toward a world where every life is valued and protected.