Many people treat suicide as a joke and something that is used to humiliate a person instead of helping and understanding. Suicide has seen a growth in the recent years and is one of the leading reason for death, especially in adolescents. Suicide or completed suicide is the successful act of intentionally causing one’s own death. Attempted suicide is an attempt to take one’s life that does not end in death, rather self-injury. The most common risk factors for suicide are depression, mental disorders, substance abuse and family or social situations. Some people feel so hopeless where they are not able to take another step and just need to stop the pain they feel that they turn towards suicide which is a permenant situation. What they do not realize is that they do not stop their pain but transfer it to someone else who cares about them and feels a great loss. Suicide prevention methods and treatment are based on patient risk factors. Treatments are prescribed in light of underlying conditions in addition to prevention of suicidal thoughts and acts. Most suicidal individuals give warning signs or signals of their intentions. The best way to prevent suicide is to recognize these warning signs and know how to respond if you spot them. If you believe that a friend or family member is suicidal, you can play a role in suicide prevention by pointing out the alternatives, showing that you care, and getting a doctor or psychologist involved. Major warning signs for suicide include talking about killing or harming oneself, talking or writing a lot about death or dying, and seeking out things that could be used in a suicide attempt, such as weapons and drugs. These signals are even more dangerous if the person has a mood disorder such as depression or bipolar disorder, suffers from alcohol dependence, has previously attempted suicide, or has a family history of suicide. A more subtle but equally dangerous warning sign of suicide is hopelessness.
To help someone and prevent suicide, educate yourself in these topics and seek out help if required. Some tips to help out are seeking help for those in need; make sure to consult a professional and make the person see a therapist as soon as you can; be proactive; always be cautious and active around your friend and make sure they are okay. Know about their issues and keep in touch as much as possible as well as the medication if they are on any as it may have side effects or behavior changes. Another way is to encourage positive lifestyle changes such as a healthy diet or exercise or even small hobbies such as reading or painting. These small changes can have a huge impact and help them focus their energy into productive things.One important thing you should always do is create a safety plan which consists of the emergency numbers as well as the family numbers which are to be contacted with hospital numbers that are close by or they have previously been in. This is crucial as you may never know when an emergency might arise and you might need help.
If you know of someone who is suicidal, do not leave the person alone. Attempt to get them immediate help from their medical provider or hospital. Remove access to dangerous items, such as firearms, medications, or other potential risks.