Suicide risk is highest in individuals that are experiencing multiple life altering events and/or risk factors at the same time. It is important to recognize the warning signs in yourself and in those around you. The most important thing to understand is that you are not alone. Our Resource Navigators are specialists trained to help guide and connect you and/or your loved one to the appropriate support channels for immediate and long-term care. Call 512-324-2039 or 877-918-2039 for help today.
Part of helping is having the ability to quickly recognize behaviors and signs that someone is in mental distress. The most commonly reported risk factors for suicide include:
- Mental illness – depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, and other acute mental illnesses
- Alcohol or substance abuse
- Previous suicide attempt
- Family history of suicide attempt
- Serious medical conditions
Warning signs should be taken seriously and given the proper attention. The following signs should be reported immediately:
- Talking and or thinking about wanting to die or to kill oneself
- Looking for a way to kill oneself
- Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live
Other behaviors that are new, have increased in intensity, or seem related to a major life event, loss, or change are also important to address quickly. High stress, losing someone close, financial strain, relationship conflicts, and other major life changes can all lead to more acute mental states and require medical and/or psychological help in order to reduce risks and provide coping mechanisms to help you or your loved one return to a hopeful and more stable state of mind.
Behaviors that should be considered as warning signs include:
- Taking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain
- Talking about being a burden to others
- Increasing the use of alcohol or other drugs
- Showing anxiety or agitation
- Behaving recklessly without regard to self or others
- Not sleeping or sleeping too much
- Withdrawing from others
- Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge
- Displaying extreme mood swings
Helpful Steps to Take if you Suspect Someone May be at Risk for Suicide
- Ask questions
- Tell the person that you care about them and are concerned
- Tell them what they have said and/or done to make you feel concerned about suicide
- Do not be afraid to ask whether they are considering suicide and whether or not they have a plan in mind
- Ask if they are currently seeing a medical professional or taking medication; if so, help them contact the treating doctor or medical professional
- Do not try to argue someone out of suicide but rather let them know that you care and that they are not alone.
Encourage Professional Help
- Actively encourage the person to see a physician or mental health professional immediately
- Find resources for them and volunteer to go along with them to appointments
Take Immediate Action
- Take the individual to a hospital emergency room as quickly as possible
Are you, or someone you know, at risk for suicide?
Ascension Seton Behavioral Health can assist with both crisis care and long-term care for you or those you may know that are struggling with any of the behaviors listed above. Finding the right type of care can feel overwhelming. Our Resource Navigators are specialists trained to help you connect with the resources needed. Assessments are provided by appointment so call today 512-324-2039 or toll free 877-918-2039.
For emergent psychiatric treatment
For emergent psychiatric treatment, please visit your closest emergency department to be evaluated. If you are in the downtown Austin area, visit:Dell Seton Medical Center at The University of Texas
1500 Red River Street
Austin, Texas 78701