Youth suicide a concern for community

Researchers are looking to natural remedies like exercise to treat depression.
Researchers are looking to natural remedies like exercise to treat depression. Contributed

SUICIDE is a subject no one likes to talk about, but if you suspect someone you know is not okay, now is the time to say something.

Queensland Commission for Children and Young People and Child Guardian figures show a gradual increase in the youth suicide rate for ages 10-14 since 2004.

However a spokeswoman for the Australian Institute for Suicide Research and Prevention felt it was important to highlight that these figures did not indicate an overall rise in youth suicide.

The spokeswoman said that while the 10-14 age group had increased, the 15-17 age group had seen a decrease in suicide and the 18-17 age group had not seen a substantial change in recent years.

Queensland Mental Health Commissioner Dr Lesley van Schoubroeck said initiatives to prevent suicides were a key priority for the Queensland Mental Health Commission.

"Our sons and daughters, our grandchildren and their friends deserve the right support when they need it most, so suicide simply is not an option for them," she said.

Dr van Schoubroeck said 22 children under the age of 18 died by suicide last year compared to 15 in 2004. She said most of the deaths were children under the age of 15.

"For the first time we have seen the suicide of a child under the age of 10, which shows clearly more needs to be done," she said.

A Mental Health and Drug Strategic Plan that will suggest a range of initiatives for suicide prevention in Queensland is expected to be released in June.

Meanwhile Matt Strickland and Ross McAllister from Kids and Teens Psychology in Caboolture felt families needed to take the time to talk to each other more to assure their loved ones are okay.

"We're spending less time together. People aren't sitting down at the dinner table and talking anymore," Mr Strickland said.

He felt it was important for parents to regularly talk with their kids to give them the chance to share their concerns.

He also encouraged parents who think their child may be at risk to talk with them about it and seek help if needed.

"For a lot of adults when your head is full of stress it can be difficult to think outside yourself," he said.

Mr McAllister felt young people were under more stress than they have been in the past.

"We're seeing a greater prevalence of family breakdown, families in financial distress, those kinds of stresses really impact on children and we see that every day," he said.

He felt the most common mental health issues youth faced were depression and anxiety, often caused by major changes in life such as leaving or changing schools, leaving home, starting uni or new careers or relationship break-ups.

"There is a stigma associated with mental illness, it's not easy to seek help and have the courage to come forward and say that you may need it," he said.

"We want to feel like we are coping."

If you are in need of counselling or mental health support speak to your GP or phone Lifeline on 131114.


Risk factors for suicide

History of self-harm

Mental disorders

Physical illness

Family history of suicide

History of sexual, physical or emotional abuse

Social isolation


Relationship breakdowns

Changes in life; family structure, school, moving house

High achievers


Low self-esteem

Having no meaningful interests



Are you ok?

Where to get help

Your GP

Lifeline 131114

Kids Help Line 1800551800

Kids and Teens Psychology Centre Caboolture 53270122

Parent Line 1300301300

Caboolture Mental Health 53161400

Emergency 000

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Coast driver spent '3km in wrong lane' before head-on crash

HIGH SPEED: The charged Sunshine Coast man was driving the purple car, in the photo.

A Coast man allegedly drove 3km in wrong lane before head-on smash

An eager eye for trains

TRAIN ENTHUSIAST: Noel Walker builds his miniature models in his home at Arcare in Caboolture.

Noel Walker hasn't let losing his sight hold him back.

Get your hands dirty to Clean Up Australia

Register to help Clean Up Australia and the Moreton Bay region.

Register now for Clean Up Australia Day in Moreton Bay region.

Local Partners

Buderim dad rejects gay son's emotional plea for second time

Bride and Prejudice: Son’s emotional plea rejected again by unmoved father

What's on the big screen this week

Ewan McGregor and Jonny Lee Miller in a scene from the movie T2: Trainspotting.

This week's new releases offer plenty of variety for movie buffs.

REVIEW: Under the Gun doco looks at right to bear arms

ARMED: A still from the 2016 documentary film Under the Gun by Stephanie Soechtig.

An in-depth look into America's gun culture.

Hodges proud to be part of first channel dedicated to NRL

Justin Hodges is gearing up for his new gig on Fox League.

Footy star hopes to provide a voice for players on new NRL channel

Furious Price wants to quit I'm a Celeb after clash with Keira

Steve Price has threatened to quit the jungle.

Will camp ration clash with Keira cause Steve to call it quits?

Novel with lots of heart

The romance in A Quiet Kind of Thunder was only one of the joys of the book.

Book proves to be a gem with layers

Bliss N Eso announce tribute show for stuntman

Bliss N Eso will play a tribute show at Coolangatta in honour of Johann Ofner. The stuntman died during the filming of the group's Friend Like You film clip earlier this year.

BLISS N Eso to play tribute show to raise funds for killed stuntman

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Expert: Why renters, home buyers may struggle

Matusik Property Insights director Michael Matusik.

What's next for the city's housing market

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!