Treatment for Suicidal Behavior

Every year, nearly 800,000 people commit suicide worldwide.  That’s practically one death every 40 seconds.  It’s one of the leading causes of death in young people ages 15-24 but can affect anyone during any stage of life.  Most commonly caused by untreated depression, suicidal behavior often goes overlooked and is easy to misinterpret or hide.  Suicide is absolutely preventable, but it’s important to know the signs in yourself or in others so that you can seek help and the appropriate treatment.

What is Suicidal Behavior?

Suicidal behavior isn’t a mental illness, but rather the result of untreated mental illness like depression.  Suicidal behaviors are actions or steps an individual takes to attempt to end their own lives.  Depression is the number one leading cause of suicide.  Men are roughly 4x more likely than women to commit suicide, but women experience depression 2x more often than men.

As is the case, men are less likely to seek help when experiencing suicidal thoughts than women.  If you know someone who you think may be struggling with suicidal tendencies or behaviors, recognizing the symptoms and warning signs is the first step towards saving a life.  If you are personally experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the Suicide Prevention Hotline (1-800-273-8255), then make an appointment with our compassionate, experienced team.

Warning Signs of Suicidal Behavior

While it can be difficult to tell if someone is contemplating suicide, there are several telltale signs that may help you pick up on their intentions.  Knowing the warning signs of suicidal behavior can save someone’s life.  If you’ve experienced any of these situations yourself, speak up and ask for help.

Warning signs can include:

  • Discussing suicide (i.e. I’m going to kill myself.)

  • Obsessing over death or violence

  • Anti-social behavior (avoiding crowds, friends, relationships)

  • Feeling hopeless

  • Feeling trapped

  • Acquiring a means to commit suicide such as stockpiling medication or buying a weapon

  • Increased use of drugs and/or alcohol

  • Mood swings

  • Major changes in personality

  • Deviating from normal everyday routines like eating or sleeping

  • Risky or self-destructive behavior such as cutting saying “good-bye” (verbal/written) or giving away personal belongings

While these are obvious warning signs, some individuals may appear to act completely normal or seem to have a cheery disposition.  Making an effort to check in on your friends and family regularly is a good way to get a sense of how they’re feeling, and may even help save their life.

How Are Suicidal Thoughts And Depression Are Treated

Suicidal thoughts are usually the result of some form of depressive or anxiety disorder.  As is the case, we recommend a combination of therapy and counseling sessions, as well as medications used to treat anxiety and depression such as an SSRI and other antidepressants.

Regular medication and therapy create a foundation for success.  Suicide is completely preventable and the majority of individuals who seek help for these invasive thoughts find success and are able to return to their normal, healthy lives.

During this time, we recommend making an effort to establish your support network.  Always let your trusted friends and family know how you’re feeling and that you’re seeking help.  And please remember:  Suicidal thoughts are temporary, and we’ll be with you as you start your journey to recovery.

How Strategic Behavioral Health Can Help

Our team of experienced providers has helped countless people live happy and healthy lives.  Strategic behavioral health has extensive training when assisting those dealing with suicidal thoughts and behaviors.  We work closely with patients and their families and do our best to ensure the brightest, best outcome.  To learn more about how we can help, reach out today.

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