• Derek Schumm, MD

Do You Know How to Save a Friend's Life?


September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month and this blog is to help each of us understand how we can be protectors for those we love and those who are a part of our community. Each year over 40,000 American adults take their lives through suicide. That accounts for one suicide every 13 minutes. Fortunately, due to the unique nature of suicide, Suicide is the most preventable cause of death.

As mental health providers at Bay Psychiatric / Bay TMS, we know the best suicide prevention method is to treat the person’s illness before they become suicidal. If you know someone that is feeling depressed, anxious, or overwhelmed, extend a helping hand and have them see a mental health professional immediately.

No one can solve the problem of mental illness on their own. However, if we become aware of the problem and address it, we can start to solve the problem. If we choose to commit to understanding and require ourselves to be involved, we can stop these terrible tragedies from occurring.

Identify and Act

We each have a responsibility to identify and help someone who has suicidal thoughts or a real plan. If you know of someone who is or has struggled with suicidal thoughts or actions, you need to act. There are many warning signs of suicidal intentions, including expressing a desire to die, having feelings of hopelessness, and “setting one's affairs in order.”9

Identify: If you aren’t sure if the individual is suicidal, ask questions. Pose an open, non-judgmental question. “Should I be concerned that you will hurt yourself?”

Act: If the answer is yes, call for help and stay with the person until you know they are safe, whether over the phone or in person.

As mental health providers at Bay Psychiatric / Bay TMS, we know the best suicide prevention method is to treat the person’s illness before they become suicidal. If you know someone that is feeling depressed, anxious, or overwhelmed, extend a helping hand and have them see a mental health professional immediately. No one can solve the problem of mental illness on their own. However, if we become aware of the problem and address it, we can start to solve the problem. If we choose to commit to understanding and require ourselves to be involved, we can stop these terrible tragedies from occurring.

Are You Suicidal?

There is a very big difference between someone who has suicidal thoughts and someone who is actively suicidal. Being actively suicidal means that there is intent and that there is a plan. If you have plans for suicide, please know that many have been in your place, and are glad they chose to get help. They realize that hope is out there and that a future of wellbeing and purpose exists for each of us. Please move to a safe place by calling 1-800-273-8255.

About TMS Therapy

TMS Therapy, or Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, is a breakthrough treatment for depression in which an MRI-strength magnet creates an electrical current directly in the areas of the brain affected by depression. It is performed in our office under the guidance of one of our TMS-trained physicians. Results have been excellent: more than ½ have had a significantly positive response and 1/3 of patients have achieved full remission! Fewer than 1/5 patients have failed to respond. Compared to standard medication treatment as demonstrated in the STAR*D study, these responses are truly excellent. It is extremely gratifying for us to see so many people achieve relief from their symptoms and return to their lives fully functional. Side effects are minimal, usually consisting only of some mild discomfort at the treatment site during the treatment session. The typical treatment course consists of 5 treatments per week for 4-6 weeks, for an average of 20-30 total treatments. Each treatment session lasts 20 to 40 minutes.

About Bay TMS (510-809-1599)

We believe in providing excellent, state-of-the-art, individualized mental health care with a focus on attention to detail and your well-being. We pride ourselves in our outstanding commitment to ensuring that you have a meaningful connection with your TMS doctor and technician throughout the duration of your treatment. After your initial evaluation with your TMS doctor, you will meet with him or her every week and we will send updates to your regular doctor and psychotherapist to keep them informed about your treatment progress. In addition, we encourage you to remain actively engaged with your technician throughout each treatment session. Scientific evidence suggests that these interactions may help to alleviate depression by simultaneously activating other important brain systems.

Benefits of TMS Therapy

Highly effective-More than 80% of our patients have a significant response.

Non-invasive-TMS does not involve any medications, anesthesia or sedation

and the patient remains awake and alert throughout the treatment

Non-systemic-It is a local treatment and does not affect other parts of the

body.

Minimal side effects-TMS does not have any of the side effects commonly

seen with medications such as weight gain, sexual dysfunction or nausea.

Who Can TMS Help?

Those whose antidepressants are not working to provide FULL relief of depressive symptoms

Those who are on medications causing side effects that limit quality of life, such as sexual dysfunction, weight gain, dry mouth, confused thinking

Pregnant or nursing females

Those on who cannot take antidepressant medications due to intolerable side effects or underlying medical problems.

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If you are seriously considering suicide, please call this number immediately:

1-800-273-8255

This is the number of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. There are trained individuals on staff 24/7 there to help you through a crisis.

#mentalhealth #TMSTherapy #depression #suicideprevention #suicideawarenessmonth

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510-809-1599    Berkeley

510-809-0160    San Rafael

415-567-6704     San Francisco / San Mateo

Bay Psychiatric Associates © 1994

TMS Berkeley: 2020 Milvia Street, 3rd Floor, Berkeley, CA 94704 | (510) 809-1599 | fax (510) 809-0468 | tmsberkeley@baypsychiatric.com

TMS San Rafael: 1330 Lincoln Ave. Suite 303 San Rafael, CA 94901 | (510) 809-0160 | fax (415) 454-8591 | tmssanrafael@baypsychiatric.com

TMS San Francisco: 2000 Van Ness Ave. Suite 405 San Francisco, CA 94109 | (415) 567-6704 | fax (415) 567-6707 | tmssf@baypsychiatric.com

TMS San Mateo: 1941 O'Farrell St. Suite 103 San Mateo, CA 94403 | (650) 393-4788 | fax (415) 567-6707 | tmssanmateo@baypsychiatric.com

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