Member Spotlight: Rising Peak Academy – Helping young men succeed for the rest of their lives.

Rising Peak Academy is a long-term residential program that provides young men ages 13-18 the opportunities and motivation to succeed in life while dealing with co-occurring disorders including substance abuse disorder, mental health and behavioral issues. Located on the edge of Glacier Park in Northwest Montana, our 36 year history of adolescent addiction treatment provides our residents the ability to focus on healthy activity, academics, counseling and life-skills that establish a foundation of recovery in each and every resident that attends our program.

Rising Peak Academy focuses on 6 specific areas of adolescent growth and development including Recovery, Academics, Therapy, Life-Skills, Service and Health and Wellness. Taking a holistic development approach, we believe that each young man who participates fully will emerge healthier, more insightful, and more self-confident – skills we know to be the foundation for success in sobriety and adult life.  Literally, and metaphorically, our therapeutic model leads residents through challenges that are strategically designed to foster self-reflection, group accountability, and resilience.

As a team-focused institution, Rising Peak provides professional staff for each department that guide the boys’ thinking and achievements in each of our program areas, but ultimately, we rely on the power of community to truly enforce the difficult steps of recovery.  Our young men will journey into the literal wilds – the peaks and valleys of Montana – as well as into their interior landscapes, with healthy peer driven support along the way.  Through these intrinsic and extrinsic experiences residents of Rising Peak are offered the opportunity to strengthen their resolve in healthy living, academic achievement, sobriety and self-awareness.

Suicide rates among young people see dramatic spike: How to help end the trend

Between 2007 and 2017, the suicide rate among young people ages 10 to 24 increased a staggering 56% according to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2017 alone, there were a total of 6,241 suicides in people ages 15 to 24: 5,016 young men and 1,225 young women.

But these numbers are more than just statistics; they are thousands of futures lost and hearts broken.

And could be the loudest cry for help that we all need to hear.

“Many children out there are suffering,” says Dr. Peggy Scallon, medical director of Rogers Behavioral Health’s residential Depression Recovery treatment for adolescents. “These numbers not only shed light on how many children are unfortunately acting on suicidal thoughts, but they also represent a great risk to all of our kids.”

According to the CDC, suicide is the second leading cause of death in young people between the ages of 10 and 24—more than homicide, more than overdoses, more than cancer.

“If we think about these numbers,” says Dr. Scallon, “the automatic thing that comes to mind is ‘why?’”

Why are teen suicide rates rising?

While more research is needed to explain the alarming trend, there are a few things we do know. Underlying mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, substance use, bullying, and trauma all play a role. Dr. Scallon explains the medical community is even beginning to draw a link between social media use, screen time, lack of sleep and the risk of suicide.

How to help prevent teen suicide

Knowing the warning signs is one way everyone can help reverse the rising rate of suicide. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention provides a comprehensive list of warning signs including an increased use of drugs or alcohol, withdrawing from activities and isolating from friends and family, giving away prized possessions, and even talking about killing oneself.

 “There’s an old misnomer that people who are talking about suicide are not the ones who are going to do it…that’s just not true,” says Dr. Martin Franklin, clinical director of Rogers’ Philadelphia clinic.

Hear more insights into teen suicide in this sit-down interview with Dr. Franklin.

If you or someone you love are in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741.

For more information about mental health treatment at Rogers, call 800-767-4411 or request a free, confidential screening online.