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The Clark County School District said there have been as many student suicides so far this school year as there were all of last year.

LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- Student mental health is a major concern across the valley. 

The Clark County School District said there have been as many student suicides so far this school year as there were all of last year. 

"When I was hearing about the suicides and also just the number of kids that are also attempting suicide or thinking about attempting suicide, it's really hard for me, and given this is my profession, this is what I do but it's still very difficult. But it goes to show you the depths that we're in, in terms of everything going on. I do feel like this is a crisis that we're in and we're just scratching the surface of this crisis," said Dr. Sheldon Jacobs. 

Dr. Jacobs is a family therapist and serves as the co-Vice President for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Southern Nevada. He said more students feel isolated from the pandemic and distance learning and sometimes those isolated feelings can turn into clinical depression and anxiety. 

"I think it's also impacting a lot of children psychologically because they aren't able to connect with their peers, they're not going to school so they're not having those connections which is important for their emotional well-being. It's really a basic human need," said Dr. Jacobs. 

Dr. Jacobs said there are signs to look for such as changes in behavior like becoming antisocial or any type of change in function like sleep. 

He also reminded parents as they try to tune into their children more, take care of themselves as well. 

Dr. Jacobs, along with a panel of other mental health experts are hosting a virtual mental health town hall Tuesday night at 5:30. 

Copyright 2020 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

FOX5 Multimedia Journalist

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