Suicide is not a mental illness but the most severe potential consequence of treatable mental health disorders, including anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, PTSD, borderline personality disorder, eating disorders, and substance use disorders. As one of the leading causes of death in the United States, suicide is a major public health concern.
At Harmony Hills, suicide prevention is our top priority. If you or someone you love is struggling with suicidal thoughts, help is available in our suicide prevention program. We provide personalized care for individuals in crisis to initially help them stabilize and then work to uncover the roots of their pain. Our holistic treatment center offers a safe, supportive, nurturing environment for you to heal. Contact us at 855.494.0357 to get the help you need and deserve.
Can Suicide Be Prevented?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), suicide is the twelfth leading cause of death in the United States and accounts for nearly 130 deaths per day on average. The majority of suicides are preventable. Research suggests the best ways to prevent suicide include:
- Learning the risk factors for suicide
- Being alert to the signs of depression and other mental health disorders
- Recognizing the suicide warning signs
- Intervening before a person can hurt themselves
- Providing support
- Asking a person directly if they are considering hurting themselves
Individuals with access to mental health services and support from friends and family are less likely to act on suicidal thoughts than those who are isolated.
What Are the Signs Someone is Suicidal?
Suicide impacts people from all walks of life. Most suicidal individuals want to live but cannot recognize alternatives to their problems and pain. One of the most significant barriers to preventing suicide is the stigma surrounding mental health issues, which prevents people from seeking help when needed.
Some of the more common signs someone is suicidal include:
- Severe sadness or moodiness – Pervasive sadness, mood swings, and unexpected rage
- Hopelessness – A deep sense of hopelessness about the future with no belief that things can change or get better
- Withdrawal – Avoiding friends, family, and social situations, and losing pleasure in activities once enjoyed
- Changes in appearance or personality – Exhibiting sudden changes in attitude or behavior and not being concerned with personal appearance
- Dangerous or self-harmful behaviors – Increased drug or alcohol use, reckless driving, or engaging in unsafe sex
- Recent trauma or crisis – Death of a pet or loved one, divorce or break-up, serious illness, job loss, or serious financial problems
- Sudden calmness – Becoming suddenly calm after a period of depression or moodiness
- Threatening suicide or talking about death and dying – Talking an unusual amount about death, making statements like “everyone would be better off without me,” or making suicidal threats
- Making preparations – Putting personal affairs in order, visiting friends and family, giving away possessions, making a will, and cleaning up their room or home
Not everyone contemplating suicide will acknowledge it, but research indicates that approximately 50 to 75 percent of people give someone a warning sign. Not everyone who threatens suicide will follow through, but any threat should be taken seriously.
Signs of Suicide in Teens
The CDC reports that suicide is the second leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 10-14 and the third leading cause of death among those between the ages of 15-24. Parents and teachers must learn to be particularly observant of teens more vulnerable to suicide because of risk factors such as trauma, mental health issues, and grief and loss.
Signs of suicide in teens should all be taken seriously. They can include:
- Suicide notes
- Direct or indirect threats of suicide
- Risk-taking behaviors
- Inability to concentrate or think rationally
- Sudden changes in personality, friends, or behaviors
- Changes in sleep habits, eating habits, or hygiene
- Giving away prized possessions
A suicidal teen may start to express increased interest in death or weapons. These themes may appear in school work, artwork, music, or journals.
Reach Out to Harmony Hills for Suicide Prevention
The suicide prevention program at Harmony Hills helps clients discover the causes of their suicidal thoughts and provides the compassionate support and care needed to promote healing, learn new coping skills, and prevent suicidal behaviors. We provide evidence-based therapies proven effective in helping individuals overcome many mental health disorders, substance use disorders, and co-occurring disorders.
Without proper treatment, individuals suffering from these disorders are at increased risk for self-harm, overdose, and suicide. Suicide is preventable. Call us at 855.494.0357 to get the help needed for yourself or your loved one today.