"They think they are worthless": Baptist Health brings awareness on suicide prevention day

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CORBIN, Ky. (WYMT) - Tuesday was National Suicide Prevention Day.

On average, someone dies by suicide every 11 hours in Kentucky.

The national average is even more frightening, with one American committing suicide every 40 seconds.

"They almost become numb to it. They think they are worthless and they accept that fact and it's not true," said Mike Dezarn, a recreation therapist at Baptist Health.

Baptist Health in Corbin tried to offer encouragement on the awareness day.

"People don't talk about it. When historically when people would try to hurt themselves or they would commit suicide families were taught to be quiet about it. To not talk about it," said Kristi Burnett the lead therapist at Baptist Health.

They held a Chalk the Walk event, where people shared encouraging messages for everyone to see.

"It kind of hit home when we had staff that came out and they would draw their picture or write their quote and at the end of it, it would say RIP and then have the name of the person," said Burnett.

Dezarn helps those who struggle with depression with games, puzzles and art. He says he knows these struggles personally.

"I know what they go through on those things. I remember those days and I can see it in them sometimes and I'm just so thankful that I can actually bring a little bit of happiness to them cause I remember how dark those days are," said Dezarn.

Dezarn says to just let people know you are there. Stay next to them and always listen.

"Set the phone out of the way, get the computer system out of the way, get the games out of the way. Just listen to the person, and listen to their fears and their hopes and dreams," said Dezarn.

Baptist Health provides many services for those struggling with mental health. One of those is a 24/7 helpline to answer any questions.

That number is: 1-800-395-4435

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