Information for crisis intervention and suicide prevention resources for individuals with substance use disorders on the Internet
Barbara Schneider, Kristin Grebner
Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University, Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Internet and Suicide. Hauppauge, New York: Nova Science Publishers, 2009, 452 pages.
Substance use disorders like alcoholism are major risk factors for suicide. During the last decade, new media including the Internet were getting more and more important in delivering information. Using suicide-related terms, the few studies about internet search provided ambiguous results regarding help and support. A recent internet search in English and in German language with suicide- and addiction-related search terms revealed that the majority of websites was not associated with suicide at all. There are several challenges for future developments: Using different terms associated with suicidality and/or addiction, search engines should immediately tell web addresses of help services and advice centres and should not produce possibly dangerous suicide forums or pages not related to suicide; furthermore, search engines should more frequently deliver helpful information, e. g. present addresses of help services, and help services should be able to target various help-seeking groups adequately. In view of the scarce knowledge about substance abusers’ opportunities to get information about crisis intervention and suicide prevention via the Internet, further research on this topic is necessary.