‘Contagious’ suicide a concern in teens

WASHINGTON – The third-leading cause of death among young people isn’t disease or accident — it’s suicide. And according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, a suicide happens every 13.7 minutes.

How a community reacts to a teenager taking his or her own life can have profound effects on teens already suffering from a sense of alienation or hopelessness.

Dr. Eric Rossen, director of professional development and standards for the National Association of School Psychologists, says there is something called “suicide contagion” that can occur when a teen witnesses the way a community grieves and feels.

“‘Wow, look at all the people paying attention to this other individual

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