Suicide Education and Prevention
When mental health challenges are persistent and interfere with daily life, such as work or relationships, it’s time to seek additional support.
There are many kinds of mental health disorders – depression, anxiety disorders, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and others – and sometimes we don’t have all the answers, but we do know that they are not the result of weakness or personal failing and with the right support they can be treated. In fact, with treatment and support, 70-90% of people with a mental health challenge report reduced symptoms and improved quality of life.
If you or someone close to you is experiencing symptoms of a mental health challenge, it’s time to speak up! Help is available and recovery is possible.
It’s important to note that only a mental health professional or medical doctor can provide a diagnosis. It is also essential to understand that mental and physical health are very much intertwined, and symptoms may be different for each person.
For more information on different types of mental illnesses, please visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness.
Warning Signs for Suicide
Please seek immediate help when you hear or see any one of these behaviors. Risk is greater if a behavior is new or has increased and if it seems related to a painful event, loss, or change.
- Talking about wanting to die or to kill themselves.
- Looking for a way to kill themselves, such as searching online or buying a gun
- 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.
- Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs.
- Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly.
- Sleeping too little or too much.
- Withdrawing or isolating themselves.
- Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge.
- Displaying extreme mood swings.
You are not alone. If someone you love or care about is showing any of the following behaviors, have them or help them call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline Phone (800) 273-TALK (8255) Press 1 for a dedicated line for veterans and their families. You could be saving their life!
Help prevent suicide.
People who are suicidal often say or do things that are signals of their intentions. These provide an opportunity to start a conversation, even if it is difficult. Talking specifically about suicide does not cause it to happen or plant the idea. Communicating your concern and offering to find help could save a life. If you are concerned about someone take action right away!
How you can help:
- Learning the warning signs for suicide.
Become familiar with the warning signs and don’t hesitate to take action if you notice unusual behaviors.
- Reach out and stay involved.
Continue to reach out, be persistent and don’t give up. Your efforts let people know you care about them.
- Start the conversation.
Verbalize you are concerned about them. You could say:
“I am worried about you.”
“It seems like something is bothering you.”
“You don’t seem like yourself lately. How can I help?”
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
“Are you depressed?”
“Are you feeling that there is no way out?”
“Are you thinking about ending your life?”
- If you think the person is suicidal:
Stay with them and listen to them. Help them get help. Tell them to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline Phone (800) 273-TALK (8255) to talk to someone about how they are feeling. If you don’t think they can call on their own, then offer to call with them.
- Learn QPR!
QPR, which stands for Question, Persuade and Refer, is an emergency intervention to help a person who is considering suicide. In a one-hour training session, individuals learn to recognize warning signs, what questions to ask and how to offer hope and help. QPR trainings are offered at The Jordan Elizabeth Harris Foundation. To schedule a FREE training session, contact Kristi Wiley Program Director at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit: www.jordanharrisfoundation.org