Suicide is a serious public health problem that has lasting harmful effects on individuals, families, and communities. Many factors contribute to suicide.
Where do suicidal thoughts come from? Every person is different, but there are a few common triggers for suicidal thoughts. These include depression and other mood disorders – Many mood disorders are caused by chemical imbalances in the brain. And if you leave these untreated, the imbalances can result in feelings of hopelessness and despair. You must move away from these feelings quickly or they can consume you and push you into taking drastic actions.
Call the Lifeline, whether they are thinking about suicide or not, and get emotional support for your sadness and depression. There is no minimum age, and you can receive support at any time, even on holidays. As long as you have a phone, or have access to a phone, you can call the number and talk to someone.
Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 for suggestions and local resources for help, hope, and encouragement.
This all usually happens within 30 seconds. The Suicide Prevention Lifeline is actually a huge network of crisis centers across the entire country. So your call is just sent to the center closest to you.
When dealing with someone who is highly depressed and hopeless listen and encourage them to talk about their situation. Show empathy for their situation and take them seriously. If possible do not leave them alone. Discuss the many different ways that you can get them help and if they agree follow up and get the help (e.g. contact their doctor or call a mental health center or crisis hotline for advice).
The good news is that suicide is preventable. Preventing suicide requires strategies at all levels of society. This includes prevention and protective strategies for individuals, families, and communities.