You Could Save a Life from Suicide

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A woman suffering from depression isn’t an automatic suicide risk. But more women than men attempt suicide, and serious suicide attempts often follow long periods of depression. The National Institute of Mental Health says that more than 90 percent of those who die by suicide either suffer depression or a substance abuse disorder.

Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in the United States, taking the lives of approximately 38,000 Americans each year.

When you’ve never experienced depression and see it up close, you might not realize that your loved one often has little control over her condition. You might not appreciate that unrelenting despair is chemically created and incredibly difficult to stop.

As friend or family to someone with depression, you could be a lifesaver. Know that it’s not easy to detect if someone you care about is having suicidal thoughts. Still, there are warning signs if you know where to look.

Pay close attention if your special someone is:You Could Save a Life from Suicide - In Content

  • Talking about feeling hopeless
  • Showing signs of anxiousness or agitation
  • Talking about having no reason to keep on living
  • Making a will
  • Giving away personal possessions
  • Avoiding social interaction
  • Searching for a means of doing personal harm, such as buying a gun
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Eating too little or too much, resulting in significant weight gain or weight loss
  • Engaging in reckless behaviors, such as excessive alcohol use
  • Expressing rage
  • Talking about revenge

Take any threat of suicide seriously. If you suspect that she is considering suicide but hasn’t said anything, talk to her about your concerns. Begin the conversation by asking questions in a non-confrontational way. Ask if she has ever thought about committing suicide or taken steps to do so, now or in the past?

If she answers yes to any of those questions, get immediate help. You can call 911 or the toll-free National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

There are warning signs if you know where to look.

While you wait for help to arrive, stay with her. Calmly reassure her that all will be well. Remove any obvious means of causing self-harm, such as guns, sharp objects or dangerous medications.

Even if suicide isn’t on her mind, encourage your loved one to seek help for her depression from her doctor or behavioral health professional. Encourage her to make an appointment and ask to go with her, even if you just sit in the waiting room. Follow through.

With psychotherapy and medication, many women who seriously contemplated ending it all get past suicidal thoughts and live happy lives.

Find Your Perfect Match

Answer a few questions and we'll provide you with a list of primary care providers that best fit your needs.

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