Singapore considers suicide a very serious issue due to the very nature of the problem and the fact that rates have been increasing over the past few years. The latest statistics paint a troublesome picture, showing that the negative trend isn’t over yet.

In recent years, suicide rates have been increasing for all demographics. This is the leading cause of death in the 10 to 29 age group. In addition, suicide is still considered a taboo issue. Such social attitudes contribute to stigma and prevent many people experiencing mental health anguish from seeking therapy.

The Latest Suicide Statistics

The latest suicide rate report for Singapore is quite bleak.

Samaritans of Singapore reported that the number of suicides has increased 10 per cent on an annual basis.

In 2018, there were 397 reported suicides in comparison to 361 suicides in 2017. An increase was noted in all age groups apart from the 60+ demographic.

Samaritans of Singapore (SOS) is a suicide prevention agency that focuses predominantly on offering emotional support to individuals in crisis who may be thinking about ending their lives. SOS also keeps track of statistics and alerts the society of the latest suicide-related trends.

According to the latest report, the facts surrounding suicide among young people is exceptionally alarming. The suicide rate among boys has reached an all-time high. In 2018, 94 people in the 10 to 29 age range ended their lives. There were 19 suicides among boys aged 10 to 19 – the highest number since the organisation started keeping track in 1991.

Young People Missing Support

Many young people feel that they’re missing support at a time of massive need. Ending their lives seems like the only option for overcoming the pain and the anguish, SOS reported.

The only positive development noted by the organisation is the willingness of young people to reach out and seek help.

Of all people who got in touch with SOS for emotional support, over 78 per cent belonged to the 10 to 29 age group. This number represents an increase of over 56 per cent on an annual basis.

Young people in Singapore seem to have a high level of awareness about mental health problems. They also recognise the need for therapy and guidance in over to overcome their darkest moments. Young people today explore an array of support venues like online resources, peers and even professional therapy/support services.

At the same time, Singaporean society puts emphasis on toughness and being stoic. Thus, Singaporeans lack tolerance for behaviours that have traditionally been perceived as signs of weakness. Such outdated views on mental wellbeing and the work with a psychiatrist in Singapore, for example, still prevent many people from getting the assistance that could save their lives.

It’s important for those experiencing mental health problems to learn that it’s ok to be less than perfect and to reach out in such moments. Many mental health professionals and non-governmental organisations in Singapore are working to ensure this shift and to contribute to more readily accessible assistance.

Does Therapy Reduce the Suicide Risk?

Psychotherapy can play a massive role in reducing the suicide risk across all age groups, especially among the most vulnerable members of society (very young or marginalised individuals).

It’s essential for psychologists/psychotherapists in Singapore to work with their patients on how to understand and regulate their emotions. Skills deficiency in this department could lead a person to seek a way out through ending their life. Such deficits can be corrected when the right “skills” and coping mechanisms are highlighted and internalised.

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is another approach that has been delivering good results.

2016 meta-analysis published in the Psychology Research and Behavior Management journal suggests that CBT has a good success rate in helping patients overcome suicidal thoughts.

The research shows that mental health conditions are implicated in 91 per cent of the global suicide cases. Thus, addressing the underlying mental health problem that’s linked to the suicidal thoughts reduces the risk for patients. Depression is one example of a condition that increases the risk of suicide and that could be addressed by CBT.

Another study shows that approximately nine hours of personalised CBT for suicide prevention has been reported to reduce the likelihood of repeat suicide attempts by 50 per cent in patients. Published in the Current Psychiatry journal, the study suggests that therapist and patient can exchange information to develop a collaborative plan for suicide prevention. In addition, the patient is provided with a safety plan that features the therapist’s contact information. Such information enables a suicidal individual to reach out and get assistance when they’re feeling down and they could be prone to self-harm.

Recovery Is Possible

If you know someone who may be suicidal, please understand the fact that recovery is possible through the the right therapy. For this purpose, you will need to reach out and help your loved one acquire the skills needed to manage negative emotions and overcome mental health problems.

Numerous effective psychological and psychiatric approaches can be tailored to the needs of the specific individual. New discoveries, paired with traditional therapies and enhanced outreach opportunities in Singapore can increase the survival rate for people dealing with suicidal thoughts.

It is quite often that a suicidal person is ambivalent about ending their life. Very few are firmly set on accomplishing the goal. Thus, a mental heal professional can move a patient in the right direction through personalised therapy.

Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic features a team comprised of experienced psychiatrists and therapists who are caring, passionate and willing to pinpoint the right approach for every single patient.

Specialised services are available, once patients undergo assessment. The clinic offers psychotherapy, art therapy, CBT, clinical hypnosis, MBCT, clinical psychiatry and other approaches that can be used to address an array of mental health problems.

Please contact Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic today if you know someone who are showing signs of depression or have expressed the desire to end their life. The sooner you seek assistance, the higher the likelihood of turning their life around.