Suicides in Mesa County are higher than the national average, and District 51 and the Mesa County Health Department are looking for ways to find trends and work towards solutions.

Recently a report was released that shows suicide in Mesa County is at nearly 23 out of 100,000 (22.7) which is higher than the state average of 19.4 per 100,000 and almost double the national rate of 12.4 per 100,000.

Compared to the 2013 rate which was a sobering 111.7 suicides per 100,000, the Mesa County rate is showing improvement, but it still alarmingly high. Teens 15-19 and adults 36-54 are the most likely to attempt suicide with depression and health being the largest determining factors. In students, alcohol use and bullying are pointed to as two huge contributing factors.

Other factors, according to the report, are obesity, poverty, and unintended pregnancy, especially in teens. The good news in that regard is that teen pregnancy seems to be declining in Mesa County.

School staff determines those who could possibly be a suicide risk and have them take what's called a SAR (Suicide Risk Assessment). Students are chosen for this based on tips and overall behavior. The District 51 and Mesa County Health go over the assessments to allow for additional data to be combined with the information they have to try and figure a way to reduce suicides in Mesa County even further.

District 51 is also attempting to gain grant money in order to train teachers on suicide prevention measures.

The video points out the staggering losses we all feel. It was made a few years ago but is still relevant.

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