4 Our Vets: Experts working to prevent suicides across the state

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OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs is working to protect veterans across the state from issues that may go unnoticed.

Oklahoma officials say they are concerned about the uptick in the number of suicides across the state, including those who have served our country.

In 2015, Oklahoma was seventh in the nation for the number of suicides in the state. In all, 773 people took their own lives and 159 of those were veterans.

Experts say suicide is preventable, but the signs will often go unnoticed.

The Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services hosts mental health first aid training, which teaches people how to deal with people who may be at risk of suicide.

Department officials say they also give specific training on how to work with a veteran suffering from PTSD.

If you need help, call the Veterans Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255.

For more information, visit the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs’ website or the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services.