SUICIDE

 
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KNOW THE RISK FACTORS

Risk factors are characteristics that make it more likely that someone will consider, attempt, or die by suicide. They can't cause or predict a suicide attempt, but they're important to be aware of.

MENTAL DISORDERS

particularly mood disorders, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders, and certain personality disorders.

SUBSTANCE USE DISORDERS

Including alcohol abuse and other substance abuse.

HOPELESSNESS

A feeling or state of despair; lack of hope.

IMPULSIVE TENDENCIES

Including aggression.

HISTORY OF TRAUMA

Or history of abuse.

MAJOR ILLNESS

All types of physical illness.

PREVIOUS SUICIDE ATTEMPTS

Including suicidal thoughts, ideations, and history of family suicide. Local clusters of suicide and exposure to suicide also increases the risk.

LOSS

Loss of job, relationships, or financials.

LACK OF SUPPORT

Lack of social support and sense of isolation.

STIGMA

Stigma associated with asking for help.

CULTURE AND RELIGION

Cultural and religious beliefs, such as the belief that suicide is a noble resolution of a personal dilemma.

LACK OF RESOURCES

Lack of healthcare, especially mental health and substance abuse treatment.

 
Image by Dan Meyers

WARNING SIGNS

Some warning signs may help you determine if a loved one is at risk for suicide, especially if the behavior is new, has increased, or seems related to a painful event, loss, or change. If you or someone you know exhibits any of these, seek help.

TALKING ABOUT WANTING TO DIE OR TO KILL THEMSELVES

LOOKING FOR A WAY TO KILL THEMSELVES

TALKING ABOUT FEELING HOPELESS OR HAVING NO REASON TO LIVE

TALKING ABOUT FEELING TRAPPED OR IN UNBEARABLE PAIN

TALKING ABOUT BEING A BURDEN TO OTHERS

INCREASING THE USE OF ALCOHOL OR DRUGS

ACTING ANXIOUS OR AGITATED

SLEEPING TOO LITTLE OR TOO MUCH

WITHDRAWING OR ISOLATING THEMSELVES

SHOWING RAGE OR TALKING ABOUT SEEKING REVENGE

EXTREME MOOD SWINGS

BEHAVING RECKLESSLY

 

PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR FEELINGS

Are you experiencing any of these feelings that start with the word can't?

Can’t stop the pain
Can’t think clearly
Can’t make decisions
Can’t see any way out
Can’t sleep, eat or work
Can’t get out of depression
Can’t make the sadness go away
Can’t see a future without pain
Can’t see themselves as worthwhile
Can’t get someone’s attention
Can’t seem to get control

 

WANT TO
HELP?

Talking with and finding help for someone that may be suicidal can be difficult. Here are some tips that may help.

  • Be direct. Talk openly and matter-of-factly about suicide.

  • Be willing to listen. Allow expressions of feelings. Accept the feelings.

  • Be non-judgmental. Don’t debate whether suicide is right or wrong, or whether feelings are good or bad. Don’t lecture on the value of life.

  • Get involved. Become available. Show interest and support.

  • Don’t dare him or her to do it.

  • Don’t act shocked. This will put distance between you.

  • Don’t be sworn to secrecy. Seek support.

  • Offer hope that alternatives are available but do not offer glib reassurance.

  • Take action. Remove means, like weapons or pills.

  • Get help from people or agencies specializing in crisis intervention and suicide prevention.

 
Image by Mohamed Nohassi

“If you're looking for a sign not to kill yourself, this is it”

Author Unknown