Suicide Prevention: Know The Warning Signs


Suicide is the third leading cause of death for people 15-24 years old. Suicide is a hard thing to deal with on both sides, the person that is trying to end their life and the family and friends who can be left with the heartbreak of losing a loved one. Here are some ways to hep prevent suicide from happening.

Lock up firearms- A gun is used in more than 60% of suicides. This is why firearms need to be unloaded, locked up and out of reach of children and teens.

Monitor and lock up medication- Overdosing is another common way that people attempt or contemplate suicide.

Recognize and seek help for mental health issues- Not a lot of people realize that people who attempt suicide could be suffering from a mental disorder, or going through a really stressful period of time. Young people with anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder and drug or alcohol use are at higher risk of suicide. In fact, 95% of people who die by suicide were struggling with a psychological disorder at that time. Another cause of suicide is feeling hopelessness, feeling like you don’t belong or heartbreak from a relationship ending or a death in the family. Physical and emotional abuse can also be a trigger.

Knowing if someone you love is thinking of taking their life is a hard thing to look for, and is not always easy to figure out by yourself.

Here are some warning signs to look for:

Someone who talks about suicide or death in a general conversation-  This should be a red flag and needs to be reported to a adult immediately.

Giving hints- Saying things like, “What would you do if I wasn’t here anymore?” or asking questions like, “Would you come to my funeral?” In many instances this could be a cry for help, or an indicator that they are contemplating harming themself.

Start giving away their possessions– Another warning sign is if a person begins giving away important possessions to friends or family members.

If you or someone you know might be considering suicide, it is important to seek help from a doctor, school counselor or suicide prevention specialist immediately. Texas Panhandle Centers local crisis hotline is 806-359-6699 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273 -TALK (8255).