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Signs of suicidal thoughts: how to get help

Rylie Bohanan, Section Editor

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In 2016, 44,965 people died from suicide. About 13.7% of those deaths were people between the ages of 10 and 24. Suicide is the second leading death in teens in the United States, and the numbers are going up, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. There are steps you can take to help those struggling and thinking about suicide.
Here are some sites you can visit and numbers you can call:
Suicide Hotline: 1-800-TALK (8255)
American Foundation Foundation for Suicide Prevention
American Association of Suicidology: Directory of Support Groups
Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide
If you know someone that has any of these symptoms, there are ways you can help. Express your concern and show them that you care. Most people feel that if they bring up the topic of suicide, that you plant the idea in their heads, but that’s just a myth. Talk to them, even if it makes you upset or uncomfortable. Don’t shut down the conversation. Spend extra time with them and don’t let them be alone because isolation can increase the risk of suicide. And finally, go get help. Trust your instincts because they are probably right. Always keep safety a priority.

Risk Factors and Warning Signs come from the Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

Warning Signs
-Talking about wanting to die or 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.
-Acting anxious or agitated.
-Sleeping too little or too much.
-Isolating themselves.
-Extreme mood swings.

Risk Factors
-Mental or mood disorders.
-Substance abuse. (alcohol, drugs)
-Impulsive and/or aggressive tendencies.
-History of trauma or abuse.
-Major physical illnesses.
-Previous suicide attempt.
-Family history of suicide.
-Job or financial loss.
-Loss of relationships.

Helplines

Suicide Hotline: 1-800-TALK (8255)

Text HOME to 741741 and a crisis worker will text you back immediately and will continue to text with you.

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Signs of suicidal thoughts: how to get help