Depression and Suicide Prevention

Facts

85% of ASU students say they would appreciate someone helping them to get the help they need when they are feeling distressed.   

ASU Students Care

90% of ASU students, when they noticed another student in distress had helped them to get the help they needed (within the previous year).

 

ASU students reported experiencing the following feelings at least once in the past 12 months:

40.9% felt so depressed it was difficult to function.

10.7% seriously considered attempting suicide.

2.0% reported attempting suicide.

Source: American College Health Association-National College Health Assessment: Arizona State University Spring 2017. Baltimore: American College Health Association; Spring 2017 (n=2,096).

 

 

Basic Information

Basic Information

Addressing the Topic of Mental Health and Depression is Important

We encourage our ASU community to talk about mental illness, distress and suicide. By bringing these topics into open discussion, we make it easier to recognize the signs of someone struggling and can learn to take effective action to support the well-being of our friends, roommates, classmates and others. 

Mental Health

Mental health is how a person thinks, feels, and acts when faced with life's situations. This includes handling stress, relating to other people, and making decisions.

Depression

Feelings of sadness, emptiness, worthlessness and/or loneliness are normal responses to overwhelming or difficult experiences. Depression is characterized by these feelings lasting and/or not improving after a few weeks.

Distress

People who are experiencing distress have trouble managing their feelings or coping with the stress of their situation.  They may have trouble functioning or lack the desire to fulfill their daily responsibilities. 

Signs of Distress
  • Noticeable changes in behavior or routine, such as sleeping and eating patterns
  • Mood changes
  • Disconnecting from others
  • Substance use patterns
  • Engaging in behaviors that jeopardize health and safety
Suicide Risk Factors
  • Sense of isolation
  • Lack of close personal relationships
  • Poor coping skills
  • Impulsiveness
  • Mental illness (most commonly depression)
  • Substance abuse

      Many people do not tell anyone that they are contemplating suicide. People who identify their feelings and seek professional help are 87% less likely to commit suicide.

Factors that Protect People from Suicide
  • Close personal relationships
  • Strong connections to community and family
  • Problem solving and conflict resolution skills
  • Accessible and effective clinical care for mental, physical and substance use disorders
  • Healthy behaviors such as adequate sleep, healthy eating, and physical activities
Help is available

If you or someone you know is having trouble managing their feelings, coping, depressed or distressed, help is available. Talking to a trusted friend or family member, an ASU Counselor or health care provider, a Community Assistant, or other member of the ASU community can be a good start toward feeling and doing better.

Self-evaluation

How to help a friend

How to help a friend

  • Identify your concern
  • Ask what they are feeling
  • Be curious, not judgmental
  • Ask conversation-starting questions such as “how long have you been feeling this way?” or “how has this affected your daily life”
  • Recommend they seek professional help
  • Let them know you care about them

Help a Friend in Need is a guide to doing just that.

resources