Watch: Dr Alex criticises Love Island fans telling contestant to kill themselves
Dr Alex George marked this year's World Suicide Prevention Day on Friday with a poignant message to his fans on Instagram.
The 30-year-old reality TV star and mental health ambassador described the day as "really triggering" for him, after his 19-year-old brother Llŷr took his own life last year.
Dr George shared the telephone number for Samaritans — 116 123 — to his two million followers and urged people to reach out to somebody if they ever need help with their mental health.
He wrote: "Today is really triggering for me, what gets me through is the hope that it’s a chance to reach those who are silently suffering.
"On World Suicide Prevention Day, I want to remind you that you are not alone. This year especially, has been so hard and there is absolutely no shame in asking for help.
"You are loved. People care. Don’t struggle alone. There is always hope for a better day."
George took on the role of UK Youth Mental Health Ambassador within the Department of Education after his brother's death, encouraging young people to speak more openly about mental health struggles.
In July, he spoke on ITV's Lorraine on the anniversary of Llŷr's passing about the importance of families being able to talk to each other.
“The hardest thing around losing Llŷr was that we feel we didn’t have the chance to help him," he said.
George added: "I think it’s very important to look out for change and behaviour in family members and friends who might be acting differently ... if there’s anything you’re worried about and to ask them how they’re doing.
"But we also need people to know that when they are struggling they can talk about it, and what I find very hard is that I don’t think Llŷr felt that he could say it. It was there and I worry that shame was a big part of that.”
Read more: Dr Alex criticises Love Island death threats
Dr George has used his enhanced platform to speak about mental health issues since he rose to fame as a contestant on the 2018 series of dating show Love Island.
He returned to the NHS frontline as an A&E doctor during the coronavirus pandemic.
For confidential emotional support at times of distress, contact Samaritans at any time by calling 116 123 or emailing email@example.com.
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