The “Means Matter Campaign” from the Harvard Injury Control Research Center describes the importance of reducing a suicidal person’s access to highly lethal means as a critical part of a comprehensive approach to suicide prevention. It is based on the following understandings (click on each to learn more from the Means Matter website):
- Many suicide attempts occur with little planning during a short-term crisis.
- Intent isn’t all that determines whether an attempter lives or dies; means also matter.
- 90% of attempters who survive do NOT go on to die by suicide later.
- Access to firearms is a risk factor for suicide.
- Firearms used in youth suicide usually belong to a parent.
- Reducing access to lethal means saves lives.
Thankfully, you do not need to understand all of the complexities of how Means Reduction can help prevent suicides in order to suicide proof your home. All you need is around $21.
You can get the Master Lock Gun Lock recommended by Montana’s Suicide Prevention Coordinator Karl Rosston and a Vaultz Medicine Case for $20.94 plus shipping and handling.
While locking up guns and medications will not entirely reduce the danger of suicide, it’s an incredibly powerful step to help avoid tragedy.