Kansas suicide statistics and breaking the stigma

Lynette Downing of Spring River Mental Health and Wellness Center stopped by to talk statistics surrounding suicide and mental health strife in the middle of the country.

In 2017, 544 people committed suicide in the state of Kansas. Crawford County saw 7 suicide deaths while Cherokee County had 2 suicide related deaths.

The rural nature of the counties saw ties to economic woes as one of the causes of these deaths. There are also connections to loss rather that be the loss of a job or relationship. Farmers are also currently seeing suicide rates that rival veterans.

The suicide rate in Kansas has also increased 45% over roughly the last 17 years.

Lynette stresses the importance of talking about suicide with people who may have been having those thoughts, stressing the importance of destigmatizing the word. People don’t have suicidal thoughts because someone simply says the word aroudn them so intervention and discussion are important keys to battling those feelings.