Iowa’s suicide rate has increased each year since 2000, with the most Iowans — 536 — dying by suicide in 2020, up from 286 deaths in 2000, according to Iowa Department of Public Health data. These statistics are serious, and so, too, is the brain health of someone who has thoughts of suicide. In fact, depression is the most common underlying brain health disorder that leads to thoughts of suicide.
September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, and Sept. 10 was World Suicide Prevention Day. Iowa’s MHDS Regions want to share that help is available to any Iowan struggling with thoughts of suicide, and there are a number of resources available that can help save lives locally. Mobile crisis services are available to all Iowans in every part of the state. Each MHDS region can connect Iowans to local providers who can treat brain health disorders to prevent suicide.
If you have any interest in speaking to an MHDS representative in your area on how to identify individuals who may be struggling with thoughts of suicide, how to support these individuals or how to overcome barriers to treatment, I’ll gladly connect you to a representative from your region for an interview. You can also find more information about your region at IowaMHDSRegions.org.