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10 Signs of Suicide

In June, designer Kate Spade’s and chef Anthony Bourdain’s suicides reminded us that suicide does not discriminate. It can impact anyone, and it is often unexpected. Numerous factors can put a person at risk, including family history of suicide, substance abuse, access to firearms, a history of trauma, chronic illness, prolonged stress and isolation. And not everyone who is suicidal has a known mental health condition. In fact, 54 percent of people who died by suicide did not have a mental health diagnosis.

That’s why it’s critical for everyone to be able to recognize the signs that someone may be considering suicide.

Here are 10 signs of suicide that could help you determine if someone is suicidal.

  1. Threatening to hurt or kill himself or herself.
  2. Looking for ways to kill himself or herself.
  3. Talking or writing about death, dying or suicide.
  4. Rage, anger, seeking revenge.
  5. Feeling trapped, like there’s no way out.
  6. Increasing alcohol or drug use.
  7. Withdrawing from friends, family or society.
  8. Anxiety, agitation, unable to sleep or sleeping all the time.
  9. Dramatic changes in mood.
  10. No reason for living, no sense of purpose in life.

People may show one or many of these signs and some may show signs not listed.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), suicide rates are increasing. It’s clear that this is a mental health crisis we need to address.

What can you do?

Enroll in a Mental Health First Aid course today to learn more about suicide, how to recognize the signs that someone may be at risk and how to get them the help they need. Mental Health First Aid will also teach you about the risk factors and warning signs for other mental health and addiction issues, strategies for how to help someone in both crisis and non-crisis situations and where to turn for help.

If you or someone you know needs immediate support, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255) or call 911.

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