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ERIC Number: EJ1016035
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 24
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1546-2781
Counseling Older Adults at Risk of Suicide: Recognizing Barriers, Reviewing Strategies, and Exploring Opportunities for Intervention
Sawyer, Patricia; Williams, Beverly Rosa
Alabama Counseling Association Journal, v38 n2 spec iss p80-103 2012
Age-related challenges to health and well-being among older adults give rise to a distinctive array of risk factors for suicide, calling for a unique approach to suicide interventions. Americans over the age of 65 are disproportionally overrepresented in the number of completed suicides. This paper examines the epidemiology of geriatric suicide, reviews age-specific risk factors for suicide, discusses interventional modalities for use with suicidal older adults, and describes the role of the counselor in geriatric suicide interventions. In particular, we focus on a gerocounseling perspective to guide strategies for intervening with older adults contemplating suicide. This model utilizes a multidisciplinary approach derived from the integration of physical, psychological, and sociological aspects of aging. Additionally we consider the potential for emerging therapeutic models promoting resilience, sense of coherence, and dignity to be incorporated into counseling services for older adults. Specific therapies discussed include Cognitive Reappraisal, Reminiscence Therapy, and Dignity Therapy. We conclude with a discussion of the potential application of the principles of palliative care in designing and implementing holistic approaches to counseling older adults presenting with suicidal ideation. (Contains 3 tables.)
Alabama Counseling Association. 217 Daryle Street, Livingston, AL 35470. Tel: 888-655-5460; Tel: 205-652-1712; Fax: 205-652-1576; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A