What to Do if You’re Experience Suicidal Thoughts

Suicide awareness and prevention is a matter of public health. Because of this, it is essential to educate the public of the risk surrounding suicidal ideation. While fleeting thoughts are common, contemplating actionable suicide is unhealthy and dangerous. 

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) stresses the importance of normalizing communication between people who are struggling and those who can provide life-saving support. Suicide is a difficult topic, that many see as taboo. However, without education, resources, and hope, suicidal thoughts can spiral out of hand, and a person experiencing distress may not know where to turn. 

The societal impact of suicide is immense, as it is the second leading cause of death among young people and the tenth overall in the United States. Suicide rates have sadly grown since the late nineties, and have increased by 35% overall, accounting for one death every eleven minutes

It Can Happen to Anyone

Nearly half of those who die from suicide have a diagnosed mental illness, and all gender and sexual expressions are impacted. Gay, lesbian, and bisexual youth are at increased risk, and transgender adults are twelve times more likely to attempt than the general population. Data from the CDC shows that women are more likely than men to attempt to end their lives, yet 75% of those who die by suicide are male. These statistics are sobering and show that anyone, regardless of background, sexuality, or gender can experience thoughts of suicide. 

While every person is different, there are warning signs to look for when assessing for suicidal ideation. These include erratic behavior, outbursts, withdrawal from socialization, and impulsive behavior. 

Suicidal thoughts can escalate to suicidal behaviors such as collecting medication for an intended overdose, giving away or selling personal items and saying goodbyes to loved ones. If you’re experiencing such thoughts or behaviors or you know someone who is, you must reach out for professional help.

What to do if You’re Considering Suicide

If you’re experiencing suicidal thoughts, NAMI’s HelpLine volunteers are available by phone or email Monday-Friday, 10:00 am to 8:00 pm EST. They can be reached by calling 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or emailing info@nami.org. If you’re uncomfortable speaking on the phone, text NAMI to 741-741 to reach a trained crisis counselor via NAMI’s Crisis Text Line. All calls and texts are free. 

If you’re in an emergent situation and are in crisis, call 911 or the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273 TALK (8255). 

As always, Mahajan Therapeutics is here for you. If you’d like to speak to us to schedule a non-emergent appointment, please contact us. If someone you love is in immediate danger, or you yourself are at risk, please call emergency services (911) without delay.