Showing Compassion, Accepting Cultures: Preventing Suicide in the Latino Community

April 12, 2019

News Type:  Weekly Spark, Weekly Spark News


According to national data, 1 in 4 teen girls and 1 in 10 teen boys in the Latino community has had suicidal thoughts. Talking about suicide is a challenge in some Latino communities, where mental health can be a taboo topic. Some Latino youth may feel caught between cultures, say experts, which could lead them to isolate. Parents can help by expressing their own feelings and showing compassion for those who are struggling—modeling that behavior can help teach kids it is ok to not be ok. Experts recommend that parents, teachers, and health care providers check in regularly with young people to see how they are feeling. “Preventing suicide and addressing mental health for children and teens is everyone’s responsibility,” said Dr. Neha Chaudhary, child and adolescent psychiatrist at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

Spark Extra! Learn more about preventing suicide among Hispanics and Latinos.