Gundersen Health System officials report increase in teens calling 2-1-1 for suicidal thoughts

LA CROSSE (WKBT) — Illinois emergency rooms are reporting an increase in the number of children coming in with suicidal thoughts, and local health officials say it’s an alarming trend they’re also seeing.

Gundersen Health System officials who monitor the 2-1-1 crisis hotline say they’ve seen a slight increase in teenagers calling them with suicidal thoughts.

The crisis line supervisor says each call is a very personal struggle, so organizations don’t have a one-size-fits-all approach. She says adults in schools can be a helpful resource.

“Any adult in the school system can learn to watch out for the signs and just check in with somebody, saying hey are you okay? Because an adult that means well can make a big difference,” said Amy Kuester, the 2-1-1 line supervisor.

If you or someone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts– call 2-1-1. For additional mental health resources in La Crosse County, click here.