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CONTACT:  Jennifer Johnson

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“Together for Mental Health”

(August 29, 2022Salisbury, MD) September is National Prevention Suicide Month and September 10th is World Suicide Prevention Day (Wear Yellow Day).  Mental health advocates, prevention organizations, survivors, allies, and community members throughout Wicomico County will unite on Friday, September 9th  and Saturday, September 10th to participate in “Wear Yellow Day”. 

The “Wear Yellow Day” campaign aims to raise awareness about suicide prevention by teaching others how to connect, discuss and provide resources for those at risk for suicide. Join your friends, co-workers, and surrounding community members on September 10th by wearing yellow, reflecting on the value of life, and learning what you can do to make a difference. 

Suicide is a significant but often neglected public health issue surrounded by stigma, myths, and taboos. Every case of suicide is a tragedy that severely impacts not only individuals but also families and communities. Each year, more than 700,000 people take their own life after many suicide attempts, corresponding to one death every 40 seconds. Focusing on suicide prevention becomes especially important to build social connections, raise awareness, and provide hope. Reaching out to loved ones for their mental health and wellbeing could be life-saving.

“Everyone can take action to prevent suicide and provide support,” said Wicomico Behavioral Health Authority Director Michelle Hardy. “Despite concerning numbers, with the right resources and intervention, individuals can find help or learn how to provide support to others, potentially saving lives.” 

Early detection is the key. The following warning signs are indicators that a person may be in acute danger and may urgently need help: 

  • Talking about wanting to die or kill oneself
  • Expressing the desire to kill or injure themselves
  • Looking for information about methods of suicide
  • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live
  • Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain
  • Talking about being a burden to others
  • Increasing the use of drugs or alcohol
  • Acting anxious or agitated, behaving recklessly
  • Withdrawing, feeling isolated or extreme mood swings
  • Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge
  • Talking about wishing to harm themselves
  • Expressing heightened fixation with death or violence

Risk factors are also characteristics that may make it more likely an individual will consider or attempt suicide. If any of the following risk factors are expressed in conjunction with the above warning signs, a person may be at considerable risk of suicide. 

  • Stressful life events such as the death of a loved one, divorce or job loss
  • Prolonged stress factors such as harassment, bullying, social humiliation, relationship problems, or unemployment
  • Easy access to lethal methods including firearms or drugs
  • Prior suicide attempt(s) and/or prolonged history of self-harming behaviors
  • Barriers to accessing health care treatment
  • Social isolation and/or alienation

Knowing the risk factors and warning signs can provide helpful guideposts to determine which individuals in your community (or digital community) may be considering suicide or in suicidal crisis. 

Additionally, knowing available resources and how to access them, or help others access them, is critical.  

If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, help is available. Call or text 988 or chat 988lifeline.org to reach the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline.


Local resources include the following: 

  1. Eastern Shore Crisis Response Team:  1-888-407-8018
  2. Maryland’s Helpline – Dial 2-1-1 and press 1 for information, referral and crisis intervention (http://211md.org/)
  3. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:   1-800-273-TALK (8255)

For more info, visit the Wicomico County Health Department’s website at www.wicomicohealth.org or connect with us on Facebook, Instagram (WicomicoHealth) or Twitter (@WicomicoHealth).  

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