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Nigeria: Actions To Reduce The Suicide Rate.
April 19, 2021
Updated March 2022
Following some remote causes of suicide in present-day Nigeria; ranging from economic to health, and social factors, do we stand a chance to curb this suicide rate? Are there measures we can put in place to manage victims? Find out more in this article.
There are lots of reasons why someone may be experiencing suicidal feelings, for example, if there’s been a big change in your life, you’ve struggled with a low mood for some time or you’ve lost someone close to you. Other key risks include:
Any changes to your life can affect how you feel, and these can happen to anyone, says Harper. ‘We’ve experienced an unprecedented amount of change in our lives recently. Remember that there is always support available and you’re not alone.’
This is the biggest area of need – and toughest to deal with presently.
It is particularly so in largely conservative societies you find in a country like Nigeria.
In such places, people’s culture of keeping things ‘under wraps to avoid shame’, is embellished by a limited access to funds. Both of these challenges are further compounded because they cannot readily access adequate healthcare where and when they need it.
The treatments vary and require time plus a supportive environment or structure.
So there are no ‘easy’ or fast ways of getting around it.
To reduce the suicide rate, we need a working health system.
One that has facilities that are well equipped and manned by staff who are well trained – all that takes time to set up and develop.
This is possible in Nigeria with good governance and planning.
I support restricting access to harmful objects and adapting environments to keep people safe.
Some others believe this mindset is wrong and useless and rather, they feel that if anyone so determined to commit suicide, will find a way regardless.
However, taking this mindset does not allow us to use deterrents as one of the necessary tools to curb suicide attempts.
Some examples of deterrents are:
By answering these questions we may be able to create effective safety measures to curb the suicide rate that suits our environment: Some of these measures can include:
These are simply a few examples of steps that could be taken to reduce the suicide rate. Will they prevent EVERY suicide attempt? No.
While deterrence ALONE will not solve the problem, it can, in addition to other measures help in buying time or amending the circumstance around the desire to attempt suicide at that time by an individual.
Time may be what is needed perhaps for someone to get help e.g. to speak to someone who can help; or can diffuse the immediate pressure for committing the act; allowing a support measure or needed treatment to be used – for instance as is shown here:cnn.com-crisis counsellors
Finally, it takes the will and commitment of our government to ensure that structures are put in place to support the development of mental health services.
While mental health problems like depression or severe anxiety may be a factor in some self harms acts, other reasons may exist.
Success in reducing suicide rates will arise from well planned and executed measures and not knee jerk reactions.
You might be going through a cause to warrant suicide. Please get help and don’t fight alone.
Do you find this article helpful or would you like to speak to a doctor about your health? Please leave a comment below.
Editing by AskAwayHealth Team
All AskAwayHealth articles are written by practising Medical Practitioners on a wide range of health care conditions to provide evidence-based guidance and to help promote quality health care. The advice in our material is not meant to replace the management of your specific condition by a qualified health care practitioner.
To discuss your condition, please contact a health practitioner or reach us directly here.
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