Suicide rates are increasing in nearly every state, and the rate in Maine has increased by nearly 30 percent since 1999, according to a U.S. Centers for Disease Control report released this week.
The Executive Director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness in Maine, Jenna Mehnert, says the report highlights several notable facts about suicide, such as the facts that “That men account for 77 percent of suicide deaths, that it's the second leading cause of death for 15 to 34 year olds,” she says.
Mehnart also says it is important to see suicide as a problem that can affect anyone.
"Rather than the marginalization that often happens with suicides, as if it's something that only happens to 'those' people, like someone living with depression or some other type of diagnosed mental health challenge."
Mehnert also says that suicide is more of an issue of mental wellness versus mental illness. The CDC reports that there are many risk factors related to life stresses, and that many people who die by suicide don't have a diagnosed mental health condition. Risk factors include factors like job, money, housing and relationship stress.
Those who need help or are concerned about others can call the Maine Crisis Hotline at 1-888-568-1112.