Suicide is a major problem in America. On average, there are 129 suicides every day, and many more than that attempt suicide.
When someone says they are suicidal, you may not know how to help. You might be uncomfortable or concerned about making the situation worse.
If someone you know is struggling with thoughts of suicide, here’s how you can help:
Know the Warning Signs of Suicide
While some people may exhibit signs of suicide, others may not. Suicide signs include:
- Talking about suicide
- Getting the means to take your own life, such as stockpiling pills or purchasing a gun
- Withdrawing from friends and family or spending more time alone
- Having severe mood swings
- Becoming preoccupied with death
- Feeling trapped or hopeless
- Increasing use of drugs or alcohol
- Giving away belongings or getting affairs in order
- Saying goodbye to loved ones
- Developing personality changes
How You Can Provide Suicide Help
If a family member or loved one has any of the signs above, there are a few things you can do to help:
- Listen. Encouraging someone to talk about what they're going through is a powerful form of suicide help. While you may not understand what they’re going through, just listening can help them feel calmer and more positive.
- Provide reassurance. Remember, suicidal people might not have much hope. Reassure them that suicidal thoughts are common, but don’t have to be acted on. Consider encouraging them to get professional treatment.
- Encourage them to get professional help. Suicide help is available 24/7. Make sure your loved one has someone to talk to at all times. The National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-TALK is a great resource. If the situation isn’t urgent, encourage them to seek help from a medical professional or psychologist.
- Set up a support system. If there’s a form of self-help that’s helped in the past, encourage your friend or family to continue with it. Whether it’s therapy, a particular family member, or a hobby, encourage them to keep using that form of suicide help.
It’s important to note that if a person has immediate plans and means to end their life, call 911 immediately.
Contact Houston Behavioral Hospital
If someone you love is suicidal, contact us today. We have professional, compassionate counselors who are experienced in treating suicidal individuals. A licensed Intake and Referral clinician will provide a no-charge mental health assessment to help determine the best course of treatment.
The Houston Behavioral Hospital provides comprehensive, effective programs for both adults and children. We’ll provide a safe environment for your loved one to focus on improving their mental health and healing.