’night Falls Fast’ – Epidemiology, Control, Prevention and the Treatment of Suicides

Published: 2021-09-14 11:50:09
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Category: Medicine, Mental Health

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The text, ‘Night Falls Fast’ gives an international perspective concerning the epidemiology, control, prevention and the treatment of suicides. The first chapter is about a historical review of the international attitudes and values. The benefit concerning public health workers would be the scholarly assessment that follows with the annotated references in the chapter concerning magnitude and definitions. This brings to mind that suicide has long been studied. Jamison uses statistics to appeal to the sense of logos in that he knows what he is writing about. Between the years of 1987 and 1996, there were about 15,000 American children who had committed suicide. Jamison herself is an internationally recognized authority on the subject of depressive illness and the manner they are treated. The book is one of the first major books that focus on suicide during this past quarter century.
Part from the guise of respectability and knowledge, the author also persuasively utilizes numbers in demonstrating that suicide is largely a public health crisis which makes the majority of the population uncomfortable when they are talking about it. More so, the problem is revolving around the younger generation which is to say there is a real problem with the society. Apparently, suicide was considered by the World Health Organization to be responsible for about 2 percent of the deaths that occurred across the globe and these places it ahead of homicide which should not be the case. The fact the problem is steadily rising is worrisome and that people do not want to face the reality of the issue is even more problematic.The society is having problems with introspection and overall happiness which is represented by the mass denial. Jamison finds a balance for organic causes of suicide with social ones. He cites neurological damage to the fetus which is caused by cocaine and alcohol use that could predispose the children to mood disorders which also lead to suicide and lack of maternal attention that could deprive the children of early developmental stability. The growing decrease of food security in terms of effects of GMO, pesticides and other chemicals have also led to the assumption that diet can work adversely on their brains. Genes not only for mental disease but also for the purposes of impulse, aggression and violence could lead to increased risk. Jamison implies that development of forms of biological analysis and neuro-imaging could at one time lead to the point it would be possible to identify the suicidal brain for a time before the suicidal event happens and counteract it.
Jamison also brings the notion of heredity as concerns suicide which has been part of the debate for quite some time now. His discussion considers how much one can determine about an individual through heredity. If genetics could be studied adequately and the gene for suicide could be isolated then it would present a clean advantage for researchers everywhere. It would be possible to determine if mental illness is there especially if there is a history that involves violent or impulsive forms of temperament. During this analysis as well, it would be dependent on the social class of the individual. As stated within the text, it ought not be required at the end of the century rich in psychology, medicine and literature to draw lines between such things as individual complexities and humanism.
This is because there is not sufficient information as to what can drive a person to commit themselves to self-destruct and kill themselves to a particular level. Romantic failures or set-backs of an economic or career based nature could be humiliating. However, the true meaning of the reason a person may end their life is only to that particular individual. As much as history is known and however much of the personality of the individual is found, the person may die leaving others to suffer with questions and that is why there is attained reasoning as to what actually kills the individual.
Cultural notions
According to Jamison as well, cultures have varied notions concerning self-inflicted death. There are many like the Samoan, Crow Indians and the Norse were suicide is accepted as a form of self-sacrifice among the sick and the elderly. There are other societies like that of the Japanese Samurai where suicides are considered means of retaining one’s honor. Apparently, this also has to do with the architectural monuments that are within the areas as mentioned. Jumping from these monuments has also presented a contagious allure from the Empire state building in New York to the St Basilica in Rome. This is to show the weird quirks that are presented within the societal context on the way that people operate and the way that the society treats suicide.
Jamison basically illustrates that the people are limited in the way they treat suicide as concerns the privacy of mind which is an impermeable barrier. There is then a re-conception concerning strategy and care.
Psychiatric laws concerning commitment are meant to protect the civil liberties of people though they are not designed to protect the lives of those people themselves. She claims that the societal limitations have ended up letting the severely mentally ill on to the streets and they have in turn become a substantial part of the homeless in the country. They also disturb the rest of the functioning in the society and dumbfound those who manage the cities. They also make people uncomfortable but not to an extent that they would be willing to protect them or give them housing.
Jamison also notes that suicide is becoming attractive or contagious as one death enables a number of others. Localized suicide epidemics have indicated this apparently. If the act is contagious, then there is the question as to whether the book by Jamison is a potential source of infection. The evocations that she makes concerning the suicidal mind invite a lot of empathy. Her attractive writing can be quite stirring and lead the audience to side with suicide itself. She is unsentimental on the act but true feelings behind the book such as frustration, love, dignity and abomination are seen despite the constraint that her science would place on them. It is like her rational mind was a set of ropes that employed to the tie down of emotional truths that would not be bearable if they were in the open. Basically this book is a disclosure of the uncomfortable truths facing the society concerning suicide as a whole and the way that people should consider it rather than treating it as a taboo subject. In so doing, she creates a scenario of awareness.

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