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Recruiter Journal
Army Suicide Prevention Program
Dealing with holiday stress

By Fonda Bock
USAREC Public Affairs
December 22, 2016

FORT KNOX, Ky. -- While the holidays are typically a joyful and exciting time of year, they can also be stressful, depressing, and lead to thoughts of suicide, depending on what other factors with which people may be dealing.

The Army Suicide Prevention Program provides resources for suicide awareness, intervention skills, prevention, and follow-up in an effort to reduce the occurrence of suicidal behavior across the Army.

The ASPP develops initiatives to tailor and target policies, programs, and training in order to mitigate risk and behavior associated with suicide.

If you are depressed, lonely, and are having suicidal thoughts, remember you are never alone and can always talk to someone at the National Suicide Prevention Hotline - (800) 273-TALK (8255). Press 1 for the Military Crisis Hotline, text to 838255, or go to www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

If you are concerned about someone and believe he or she is having suicidal thoughts and is showing signs of emotional distress and potential self-harm, take the following steps outlined in the Ask, Care, and Escort your Buddy Suicide Prevention program:

Ask your buddy
- Have the courage to ask the question, but stay calm
- Ask the question directly: Are you thinking of killing yourself?

Care for your buddy
- Calmly control the situation, do not use force, be safe
- Actively listen to show understanding and produce relief
- Remove any means that could be used for self-injury

Escort your buddy
- Never leave your buddy alone
- Escort him or her to chain of command, chaplain, behavioral health professional, or primary care provider
-Call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.

You can also find tips, provided by the Mayo Clinic, for coping with stress and depression during the holiday season at the following link:

http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/stress/art-20047544


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