Ways to Prevent Suicide: the Role of Governments & Youths

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This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Ms. Tala Nasser, a medical student at Saint Joseph University, Lebanon. She is affiliated with the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writers and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.

Suicide is a global issue that mainly occurs to people dealing with mental health issues. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), approximately 800 000 people lose their life to suicide yearly, not to mention the number of failed suicide attempts.

Suicide is proved to be the second leading cause of death in teenage and young adult individuals. It is important to know that suicide not only affect the person concerned, but it also has an impact on their surroundings whether it is their families, friends, classmates or work colleagues.

Therefore, prioritizing mental health should be a crucial priority in socities and communities in order to reduce the risk of suicide. However, despite the importance of suicide prevention for a better community environment, numerous cases of suicide or suicide attempts are often left without assistance.

This article aims to highlight, on one side, the different strategies that could be put in place by the government, and on the other side, the role of the youth in the prevention of suicide.
In order to take care of one’s mental health, many procedures could be executed to help raise awareness about this issue, such as constantly organizing campaigns that hold this specific objective. In order to achieve that, political commitment is indispensable. 

Moreover, awareness spreading in schools is crucial in reaching this objective. In fact, suicide awareness sessions should be included in school curricula. 

In addition, with nowadays’ technology, awareness can be spread through social media, where virtual campaigns can be held by allocated specialists through the different platforms that are accessible by all. 

Lastly, teenagers should be taught how to help each other in similar situations.
With that last idea being said, we will discuss it in more details in what follows as we will underline the youth’s role in preventing suicide among them.

For an unexperienced teenager, it may be hard to recognize a friend’s or classmate’s mental state, and therefore, if they are suicidal. Nonetheless if we are attentive to that friend’s behavior, some signs might be pretty obvious. On that account, good care and attention should be given if being sceptic about someone else’s situation, and all signs of suicidal behavior must be taken seriously.

In fact, these individuals could use some support from other teenagers around them. When shown that a person cares about them, suicidal individuals feel reassurance that someone is genuinely interested about their mental health and care about their emotional well-being, which will push their self-destructive thoughts away.

Finally, if the situation is still concerning, an adult should be held in charge of it, whether it’s a teacher, parent, counselor.

In a nutshell, whether it is teenagers or the government playing their role, challenges are expected to be faced in order to reach the desired mental state for youth. Some individuals, despite all the help and support available, still tend to commit suicide, but spreading awareness helps significantly drop the number of suicide cases on a global scale. 


• Apps.who.int. n.d. National suicide prevention strategies Progress, examples and indicators . [online] Available at: https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/279765/9789241515016-eng.pdf.
• n.d. National Strategy for Suicide Prevention Implementation Assessment Report . [online] Available at: https://store.samhsa.gov/sites/default/files/d7/priv/sma17-5051.pdf.
• Mayo Clinic. 2022. Suicide: What to do when someone is suicidal . [online] Available at: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/suicide/in-depth/suicide/art-20044707

About the author

Tala Nasser is an enthusiast for making a difference. As a healthcare lover, she is a medical student at Saint Joseph University and a member of the Lebanese Medical Students’ International Committee (LeMSIC). Tala considers her family to be the reason for her constant motivation. If she isn’t spending time with her friends and family, you would definitely find her with a book in her hands. She is also deeply passionate about wellness and mindfulness.

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