Every single human life is precious since all of us make lasting contributions to society.  We all have a worth that is priceless.  However, life is not perfect nor is the world that we live in ideal.  We all have experienced setbacks and losses.  From time to time, we may feel depressed especially after a job loss, a divorce or the death of a loved one- – just to name a few examples.  It is perfectly normal to feel sad, but sooner or later we accept the loss and move on with our lives.  Despite the sadness we feel during difficult times, most of us would never even consider committing suicide.  Unfortunately, some people are simply not as strong as others, and they feel so depressed that they may even choose to end their lives.

Since every human life has a special purpose, no one should ever commit suicide.  September is Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month, which is a month dedicated to helping save human lives. 

Unfortunately, suicide is more common than many of us realize.  According to The National Alliance on Mental Illness, suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States.  One of the many ways to prevent suicide is to identify those who are most at risk.

People who have mental disorders such as depression, bipolar disorders and schizophrenia, among many other psychological diseases, have a higher risk of committing suicide.  After our bravest Americans come home from military service, many war veterans are more likely to commit suicide due to post traumatic stress disorder.  Those who have eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia, which have both physical and psychological origins, also have higher suicide rates.

Individuals who suffer from serious physical illnesses such as HIV, cancer, hypothyroidism, Alzheimer’s disease, and many other life threatening illnesses, are more likely to commit suicide.  Doctors should not only treat these patients for their physical illnesses, but they should also refer them to psychologists to help them heal emotionally as well.

Drug abusers are more likely to end their lives.  Using dangerous drugs such as heroin, cocaine and crack, among many others, make people much more susceptible to committing suicide.  In moderation, alcohol is harmless, but in excess it can make an individual more likely to end their life.  Even cigarette smokers are more likely to commit suicide.  For all of these reasons, it is very important for drug abusers to go to rehabilitation and get clean.  Not only will their bodies be freed from these toxic drugs, they will also be able to function normally without having a dependence on the drugs.

Those who are bullied simply because they are different from others are more prone to committing suicide.  The LGBT community has a higher rate of suicide than the rest of the population.  One of the many ways to stop others from harassing the LGBT community is by educating individuals about the numerous contributions that the LGBT community has made to society.

Since every human life is important, identifying those who are more vulnerable to committing suicide is paramount, so we can stop this epidemic.  Sadly, every year some people simply fall through the cracks because they do not get the help that they desperately need.  There are others who attempt to commit suicide.  Even though they did not end their lives, suicide attempts can lead to lasting injuries and even disability.  Every year 650,000 people are treated in the ER for attempted suicide.

During Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month, we should all be aware of the many symptoms of suicide.  Some of these symptoms include: talking about ending one’s life, feeling hopeless, increasing alcohol or drug consumption among many other signs.  If you or your loved one has any of these symptoms, get help immediately.  When you see a stranger on the street who has erratic behavior or inflicts injuries on him or herself, you should act like a good Samaritan and call 911.  Every human life has equal worth.