Bangalore April 6, 2017: It is estimated that close to a million people commit suicide every year globally, of which India alone accounts for approximately 25% world’s suicide deaths. India has one of the world’s highest rates of suicides among people aged between 15 years and 29 years. The four major metros – Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai and Bangalore, rank amongst top metro cities with suicidal attempts, risen by 60% in last 5 years, between ages 5-25 years.
Depression, which is a major cause of suicide in most cases, has risen by 75% in the last 5 years in metro cities like Mumbai. In India, most suicide cases take place as the early signs and symptoms of the person considering suicide are either completely missed or ignored by friends and family.
Speaking on the rampant suicide cases that have come to light Dr Vishal Sawant, Psychiatrist, Medical Director, Juno Clinic mentioned “It is true that most people who commit suicide are facing some psychological or emotional problem. If only individuals with suicidal tendency talk /speak out about their thoughts and feelings to their confidants, suicide can be avoided.” He further mentioned “there should be no shame or reluctance from the side of the individual or the family to approach psychologist or psychiatrist when one notices regular and constant negative or withdrawn behaviour as the thought to commit suicide can be effectively and clinically dissuaded by a psychologist or a psychiatrist”.
Visiting a professional psychologist/counsellor or psychiatrist should be the first step to finding solution to the problem. However as it often happens, people hesitate to visit a professional counsellor as there is a social taboo around it. Eradicating the stigma and social distancing of people suffering with depression, must be a top public health priority in order to improve mental health situation in India.
“Mental health and happiness does not rank high amongst Indians, thus very little attention is paid to the victims state of mind. Sometimes feeling sad or down is considered an appropriate response to a certain setback in life. While occasionally feeling down once in a while is normal, but having such feelings for more than 2 weeks could be a sign of depression and shouldn’t be ignored.” added Dr. Priya Pareek, Senior Psychologist at Juno Clinic.
At Juno Clinic, we have both male and female counsellors and psychiatrists from different socio demographics, which give our therapists deeper insight into family situations of their patients. Patients also find it easier to communicate better in their preferable language as some patients are shy or introvert and take time to open up. The same set of therapists provide online counseling through our online clinic (www.juno.clinic), as well as in-person counseling from our offline counseling clinics in Mumbai (Khar and Powai).
Warning Signs of Someone Considering Suicide
Any one of these signs does not necessarily mean the person is considering suicide, but several of these symptoms may signal a need for help:
· Verbal suicide threats such as, “You’d be better off without me.” or “Maybe I won’t be around”
· Expressions of hopelessness and helplessness
· Previous suicide attempts
· Daring or risk-taking behaviour
· Personality changes
· Giving away prized possessions
· Lack of interest in future plans
Dr. Vishal A Sawant, one of the most experienced psychiatrists in Mumbai, is the co-founder and Medical Director of Juno Clinic. He has been in practise for more than 18 years and was also the HOD, Psychiatry at Dr. RN Cooper Municipal Hospital & Medical College.
His special interest areas include depression, mood disorders, schizophrenia, personality problems and counselling. Dr. Sawant is involved in a considerable amount of community psychiatry work covering awareness creation, psycho-education and diagnosis, through his association with the Vishwas Charitable Trust. He strives hard to educate people about psychiatric problems and their solutions.
About Juno Clinic (Davman Technology Services Pvt Ltd.)
Juno Clinic (Davman Technology Services Pvt. Ltd.) an online and offline start-up focused on mental health counseling across India. Juno Clinic operates on a unique model that provides online (video/telephonic/chat) counseling through its online portal www.juno.clinic , as well as in-person counseling out of their clinics in Mumbai. The Company is not an aggregator for service providers but hires senior psychologists and psychiatrists full time, all of whom adhere strictly to American psychiatry protocols. The company currently has a medical team of 35 members.