DID YOU KNOW?
In 2012, the number of military suicides exceeded the total of those killed in combat. The Army, by far the largest of the military services, had the highest number of suicides at 182. The Navy had 60, the Air Force 59, and the Marine Corps had 48.
Although veterans make up only 10 percent of the population, they account for nearly one in five of all suicides in America. The suicide rate for veterans is nearly double that of the civilian population, and every day, 22 veterans take their own lives.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
FREE MOBILE APPS
(released 2011; 233,000 downloads in 95 countries) is a VA and DoD joint project and is widely acclaimed, winning numerous awards. It is a tool for self-management of PTSD, and includes: a self-assessment tool; educational materials about PTSD symptoms, treatment, related conditions, and forms of treatment; relaxation and focusing exercises designed to address symptoms; and immediate access to crisis resources, personal support contacts, or professional mental healthcare.
for insomnia (released 2013; 86,000 downloads in 87 countries) was a collaborative effort between the Department of Veterans Affairs’ National Center for PTSD (NCPTSD), Stanford University Medical Center, and the Department of Defense’s National Center for Telehealth and Technology (T2). CBT-i Coach is a mobile phone app designed for use by people who are having difficulty sleeping and are participating in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia guided by a healthcare professional.
for depression (released 2014; 23,000 downloads in 93 countries) supports people currently participating in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) who want to use an app in conjunction with their therapist to bring ACT practice into daily life.
(released 2014; 5,400 downloads in 54 countries) teaches problem solving skills and can be used in a stand-alone fashion or while participating in Problem Solving training.
Suicide Lifeguard is a FREE app intended for anyone concerned that someone they know may be thinking of suicide. It provides information on:
• How to recognize warning signs of suicide
• How to ask about suicidal thoughts and/or intentions
• How to respond and
• Where to refer
• Immediate connection to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
• Specific resources for:
o Those who identify as LGBTQ
o Spanish speaking individuals
o Persons who are deaf or hard of hearing
SIGNS, MYTHS, & TRUTHS
How to recognize when to ask for help
Know the risk factors
Myth: Asking about suicide will plant the idea in a person’s head.
Asking about suicide does not create suicidal thoughts. The act of asking the question simply gives the veteran permission to talk about his or her thoughts or feelings.
Myth: There are talkers and there are doers.
Most people who die by suicide have communicated some intent. Someone who talks about suicide gives the guide and/or clinician an opportunity to intervene before suicidal behaviors occur.
Myth: If somebody really wants to die by suicide, there is nothing you can do about it.
Most suicidal ideas are associated with treatable disorders. Helping someone find a safe environment for treatment can save a life. The acute risk for suicide is often time-limited. If you can help the person survive the immediate crisis and overcome the strong intent to die by suicide, you have gone a long way toward promoting a positive outcome.