Let's Talk About Suicide
Signs of Suicidal Thinking
Withdraw from activities and people.
Threats of suicide.
Talking or writing about killing oneself.
Acquiring means to kill oneself: stockpiling meds, buying rope, gun.
Increased use of alcohol or drugs.
Sleeping constantly or not being able to sleep.
Additional information and resources:
View the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Video: Healthcare Professional Burnout Depression Suicide Prevention
Visit the Mental Health First Aid USA website.
How to Help Someone who is Suicidal
- Are you having thoughts of suicide?
- Do you have a plan for killing yourself?
- Do you have the things in your plan to do it?
- Have you decided when you’ll do it?
If he or she has a plan and are ready to carry it out, call 911.
- Even if there isn’t a plan, a suicidal person shouldn’t be left alone.
- If he or she has assured you of lack of intention and of reasons why not to do it, still try to engage him or her in a conversation.
Listen non-judgmentally. Don’t say “That’s ridiculous!” or “Don’t be stupid.” Affirm that you are hearing him or her, validate his or her feelings, empathize with how awful this must be.
Give reassurance and information. There is help for this. Say, “Sounds like you’ve been really depressed (or anxious).” “Thinking things are hopeless is the worst trick depression plays on our thinking.” “There is help for this.”
Encourage appropriate professional help. Refer to a mental health provider or call National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1 (800) 273-TALK
Encourage self-help-reconnect with previous therapist, support system.
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National Suicide Prevention Hotline
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