Suicide Warning Signs

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Having knowledge of suicide warning signs is the first step in being able to help an adolescent in need. Contrary to common belief, about 80% of those who attempt suicide do exhibit signs. Several of these signs together may indicate it’s time to talk openly with the individual you are concerned about.

It is important to remember, however, that even healthy teens exhibit some of these signs from time to time. No one single sign is a sure indicator of suicide. Look for a pattern and trust your instincts!

Verbal
Direct statements like the following need immediat

Having knowledge of suicide warning signs is the first step in being able to help an adolescent in need. Contrary to common belief, about 80% of those who attempt suicide do exhibit signs. Several of these signs together may indicate it’s time to talk openly with the individual you are concerned about.

It is important to remember, however, that even healthy teens exhibit some of these signs from time to time. No one single sign is a sure indicator of suicide. Look for a pattern and trust your instincts!

Verbal
Direct statements like the following need immediate attention:
“I want to die”
“I don’t want to live anymore”
“Life stinks and I want to get out”

Indirect statements can also give clues:
“I want to go to sleep and never wake up”
“They’ll be sorry when I’m gone”
“Soon the pain will be over”
“I hate myself”

Behavioral
Lack of energy
Acting bored or disinterested
Tearful sadness
Difficulty concentrating or making decisions
Silence or withdrawal
Anger and destructive behavior
Less interest in usual activities
Giving away prized possessions
Poor school performance
Confusion
Dwelling on death in creative activities such as music, poetry and drawing
Difficulty sleeping or changing sleep patterns
Increased thrill seeking and risky behaviors
Increased use of drugs and alcohol
Change in appearance and cleanliness
Change in appetite or eating habits

Environmental
Previous suicide attempts by a family member or friend
Problems at school
Family violence
Sexual abuse
Major family change

Remember, if you suspect someone is suicidal, seek professional help!

source: Youth Crisis Stabilization Program, Community Health and Counseling Services

e attention:
“I want to die”
“I don’t want to live anymore”
“Life stinks and I want to get out”

Indirect statements can also give clues:
“I want to go to sleep and never wake up”
“They’ll be sorry when I’m gone”
“Soon the pain will be over”
“I hate myself”

Behavioral
Lack of energy
Acting bored or disinterested
Tearful sadness
Difficulty concentrating or making decisions
Silence or withdrawal
Anger and destructive behavior
Less interest in usual activities
Giving away prized possessions
Poor school performance
Confusion
Dwelling on death in creative activities such as music, poetry and drawing
Difficulty sleeping or changing sleep patterns
Increased thrill seeking and risky behaviors
Increased use of drugs and alcohol
Change in appearance and cleanliness
Change in appetite or eating habits

Environmental
Previous suicide attempts by a family member or friend
Problems at school
Family violence
Sexual abuse
Major family change

Remember, if you suspect someone is suicidal, seek professional help!

source: Youth Crisis Stabilization Program, Community Health and Counseling Services

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