What Is Suicide?
By definition, suicide is the act of injuring oneself with the intention of causing death. Oftentimes, this stems from a number of factors, including unresolved personal struggles and societal and environmental conditions. It can also be a reaction to other mental health symptoms.
A suicide attempt is an attempt to end one’s life that results in survival. Meanwhile, suicide that ends in death is a completed suicide. Individuals who died from a completed suicide may or may not have attempted suicide in the past.
Some commonly used methods for suicide are poisoning, hanging, or firearms.
Prevalence of Suicide in the Philippines
In the Philippines, mental health is not yet considered a top national concern. But in recent years, both public and private organization have started to raise awareness about mental health issues like depression and anxiety.
According to data from the Department of Health (DOH), intentional self-harm is one of the leading causes of death in Filipinos ages 20-24. Meanwhile, a 2011 study showed that 16 percent of students ages 13 -15 years old have contemplated taking their own life. Likewise, 13 percent have already attempted suicide.
While there’s a lack of extensive studies and data about suicide in the Philippines, the numbers show that improvements in national mental health programs are necessary. Similarly, it is important to raise awareness of the growing mental health crisis and of the available mental health services in the Philippines.
Why Does A Person Commit Suicide?
Many factors (often interconnected) can compel a person to take their own life. People who have suicidal thoughts usually think that they no longer have anything left to live for or that life is no longer bearable. Likewise, mental health issues like depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder can also escalate to suicidal thoughts.
There may also be a link between family history and a person’s risk of committing suicide. If someone in the family has died due to suicide, other members of the family may be prone to suicidal thoughts as well. There also additional risk factors associated with an increased risk of suicide or having suicidal thoughts: