An average of 5,400 American students in grade seven to twelve attempt suicide every day, and suicide is the second leading cause of death for youth ages ten to twenty-four. With suicide being so destructive to those in the college demographic, and September being National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, Sinclair decided to step in.
Students and counselors gathered to hear a Sinclair Talks discussing methods of suicide prevention. Those in attendance had the opportunity to ask various questions to Sinclair counselors and members of the nonprofit SAVE US Dayton suicide prevention group.
SAVE US Dayton is a growing, local organization that describes themselves as “Suicide Awareness and Voices for Education, Understanding and Support in Dayton.”
Sally Luther, who is a head member of SAVE US Dayton, and a victim of suicide in the family, led the panel and provided ways to prevent depressive habits and how to spot them in others.
The Sinclair Talks event began by showing “It’s Real: College Students and Mental Health,” a documentary revealing the struggles of college students who face depressive, anxious and overall suicidal thoughts.
Some common symptoms include intense lack of motivation, insomnia and/or excessive sleeping, irregular eating patterns, social hermiting and repeatedly disregarding responsibilities such as school and/or work and thoughts of self harm/worthlessness.
Both the counselors and the documentary gave the audience many methods of combating these toxic thought patterns.
Some of these methods include seeking help through therapy, eating a healthy diet, getting plenty of exercise and spending time outdoors. There were also some methods that were a little outside the box.
Luther mentioned even getting plenty of sunlight can help, a regular eating and sleeping cycle and even keeping a journal to write down one’s thoughts would be beneficial. Many of the students included in the short documentary said that writing their thoughts and feelings help tremendously. Some of these solutions seem like common knowledge, but many of them never even cross the minds of students.
There are also multiple outlets throughout the campus to give help to any who need it. The team of Sinclair counselors present said that their offices are open to anyone who feels they need help finding a solution.
While no clubs or programs were mentioned in detail, they said that more specific outreach would be provided alongside a visit to their offices. Examples of ways counseling offices can help are by having students join clubs, or getting them in contact with a mentor here on campus. Whatever help is needed, the advisors can get in contact with any specific requests.
Both Sinclair counselors and SAVE US Dayton have connections to specifically help LGBTQ students.
There are many other ways of being heard throughout the Dayton area. For a compiled list of these outlets and more suicide awareness information, you can get in contact with SAVE US Dayton at any given moment.