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Depression

05 September 2011

Suicide in SA increasing

South Africa is dealing with economic stress, political uncertainty, crime and social transition, which means that many citizens are feeling stressed to breaking point.

South Africa, even 17 years after democracy, is dealing with economic stress, political uncertainty, crime and social transition, which means that many of the country's citizens are feeling stressed to breaking point.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), around one million people worldwide die from suicide every year and predictions are that by 2020 this figure is likely to escalate to approximately 1.53 million people per annum. Professor Lourens Schlebusch, a South African authority on stress and suicide, says that although many suicides and attempted suicides go unreported, South African suicide statistics in general are alarming.

According to Prof Schlebusch, recent research in the country shows that on average, suicide accounts for 9.5% of non-natural deaths in young people and 11% in adults.

SADAG helps suicidal teens

"Teen suicide is a preventable tragedy and only through destigmatisation and education, through teaching peers and teachers to recognise warning signs and intervene, can we save lives," says Chambers. "I was really down and feeling like giving up," says 16-year-old Charles.

"I figured life was never going to get better and was really thinking about killing myself. I didn't tell anyone how I felt because I was scared they would laugh or shout at me. I guess SADAG came just in time for me!"

 

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