Health & Wellness

Guest Column

Learning the Warning Signs to Prevent Teen Suicides

27f95eccbf048740ac3e_photojoanie.jpg
Maria Sikoutris Di Iorio, MA, EdS, MFT, LPC, is Clinical Director of Hellenic Therapy Center.
27f95eccbf048740ac3e_photojoanie.jpg

Losing a child to suicide is one of the most devastating, heartbreaking and life changing events that impact a family’s life forever. Parents, siblings, family, friends and community are all affected by the loss and our community mourns.

How can teen suicides be prevented? 

Parents question and blame themselves for not having seen the warning signs. Understanding the issues concerning suicide and mental health is an important way to take part in suicide prevention. We can be the most involved parent and have experienced the best conversations with our children over time, yet this tragedy can strike regardless.   

Sign Up for E-News

However, it is essential that we begin to talk about these issues with our children. It is a myth that asking about suicide increases the risk of suicide. If your teen is struggling with depression, loss, bullying or trauma, ask where their mind goes when they are feeling very badly. Let your teen know that you will not panic if they tell you the truth. Reassure them that you are there to help. You can ask “Are you feeling hopeless and helpless that you think of killing yourself”?

What are some of the warning signs?

  • Threatening to hurt or kill oneself or talking about wanting to hurt oneself,
  • Looking for ways to kill oneself by seeking access to firearms, pills,
  • Talking or writing about death,
  • Feelings of rage,
  • Sleeping too much or too little,
  • Feeling anxious
  • Depression,
  • History of abuse or trauma,
  • Agitation and mood changes,
  • Loss of interest in school activities, 
  • Loss of interest in daily activities, and
  • Increase in alcohol or drug use.

It is also helpful to be aware of past family history and know about mental disorders or family history of suicide. Provide and offer help to your child.  Let them know that talking through their feelings could be very helpful and seek immediate professional help. The National Suicide Hotline 1-800-273-8255 provide 24/7 assistance.

At the Hellenic Therapy Center, 567 Park Avenue, Scotch Plains, we offer individual, family, couple, adolescent, children therapy.  We are available day, evening and weekend hours. We have a team of licensed professionals who can assist you through a difficult time. Visit us on Facebook or www.hellenictherapy.com or call 908-322-0112.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TAPinto.net or anyone who works for TAPinto.net. TAPinto.net is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer. Click here to submit a Guest Column.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Scotch Plains/Fanwood

Westfield Family Continues ‘Summer of Kindness’ with Infant Clothing Drive

July 12, 2018

WESTFIELD, NJ — Westfield mom and teacher Sara Liptack is continuing her family’s “Summer of Kindess” with an infant clothing for Furniture Assist, an organization in Springfield that helps formerly homeless people, veterans, the elderly, fire victims, refugees and people fleeing domestic violence.

“I said, ‘What’s the one thing you really ...

It's Not What You Are Eating, It's What's Eating You

EMOTIONAL EATING: FEEDING YOUR FEELINGS

Emotional eating can be described as episodes of binge-eating, grazing and/or eating when not hungry to soothe feelings. Emotional eaters have a pattern of eating to cope with stress, emotional conflicts and problems of daily life.

Emotional eating is eating for reasons other than hunger. Instead of physical symptoms initiating the eating, ...

Let's Talk About Suicide

In our world today, it seems our children, no matter the town, state, education, family unit, socioeconomic background, ethnicity or religion are grappling with complex, confounding and complicated issues not even fit for a middle-aged adult. Sadly, one of these issues is suicide. With mental health gaining more attention, the stigma appears to be dissipating but when a mental health ...

What Is Your Bottom Line?

This week's Parshah (Torah reading) is the Parshah of Pinchas the Zealot: the courageous young priest who stood up against idolatry and immorality and, in the end, saved Israel from a devastating plague.

While Pinchas' radical response made him a hero worthy of having a Torah section named after him, we wouldn't necessarily suggest to our children ...

Affordable Housing Hearing In Trenton Needs Your Voice

July 16, 2018

Dear Editor:

Recently Mayor Al Smith of Scotch Plains joined the chorus of ordinary suburban New Jersey voices  who are deeply concerned about NJ overdevelopment in the guise of affordable housing.  Prominent names like Asm. Jon Bramnick, Asw. Holly Schepisi and NJ101.5 radio host Bill Spadea have also expressed concern. 

Unfortunately, I ...

When to Dial 911: Scotch Plains Rescue Squad Tip of the Month

July 10, 2018

There are many times you should call 911. If you or someone around you is in true medical distress, such as experiencing difficulty breathing, chest pains, bleeding, possible stroke, or any other serious health issues, then 911 should be called as soon as possible. If there are wires down, fire, a crime in progress, or other dangerous conditions to people or property, call 911 ...

Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey Encourages Family Fun with Online Fishing Tournament

July 16, 2018

MILLBURN, NJ — The Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ) is asking families to cast their lines and reel in some quality time this summer as part of the fourth annual Don’t Get Hooked on Drugs Online NJ Family Fishing Tournament.

The competition will be held from July 27 to August 5 as a way to encourage families to enjoy a day of fishing, while giving ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_cc8628f5341384982d39_spfd_formal_photo

Tue, July 17, 6:00 PM

Stage House Tavern, Mountainside

Scotch Plains Fire Department 150th Anniversary ...

Food & Drink Police & Fire

Carousel_image_855652b94dad7cfd1c72_mini_magick20180618-30381-1j0t0jb

Tue, July 17, 6:00 PM

Westfield Presbyterian Church, Westfield

Youth Mental Health First Aid

Health & Wellness

Carousel_image_8bc24d85ca74db6c7c50_chess_piece

Wed, July 18, 6:00 PM

Scotch Plains Public Library, Scotch Plains

Youth Chess Club at Scotch Plains Public Library

Arts & Entertainment Education