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Suicide: How to Identify If Someone Is At Risk and How To Help

Suicide is a serious public health problem in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the US, and the second leading cause of death among youth and young adults aged 15-34.

In 2020, there were over 45,000 suicides in the US. This means that an average of 125 people die by suicide every day. Suicide rates have been increasing in recent years, especially among youth and young adults.

There are many factors that can contribute to suicide, including mental health conditions, substance abuse, and trauma. However, it is important to remember that suicide is preventable. There are things that we can all do to help prevent suicide, including identifying the signs of suicide risk and providing support to those who are struggling.


Signs of Suicide Risk

There are a number of signs and symptoms that may indicate that someone is at risk of suicide. These include:

  • Talking about suicide or wanting to die
  • Making threats to hurt themselves
  • Giving away belongings or putting their affairs in order
  • Experiencing sudden changes in mood or behavior
  • Withdrawing from social activities
  • Losing interest in hobbies or activities they used to enjoy
  • Feeling hopeless or helpless
  • Feeling trapped or like there is no way out

If you are concerned that someone you know may be at risk of suicide, it is important to talk to them about it. Let them know that you care about them and that you are there for them. You can also offer to help them find professional help.


What You Can Do to Help

If you are concerned that someone you know may be at risk of suicide, there are a number of things you can do to help. These include:

  • Talk to them about your concerns. Let them know that you care about them and that you are there for them.
  • Offer to help them find professional help. You can help them find a therapist or counselor who can provide them with the support they need.
  • Be supportive and understanding. Let them know that you are there for them and that you will help them through this difficult time.
  • Encourage them to reach out to others for support. This could include friends, family members, or a support group.

It is also important to remember that you are not alone. There are many resources available to help you support someone who is at risk of suicide. You can contact a suicide prevention hotline or a mental health professional for more information and support.


Suicide Prevention Resources

  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Call or text 988
  • Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741741
  • The Trevor Project: 1-866-488-7386
  • Trans Lifeline: 1-877-565-8860
  • Veterans Crisis Line: 1-800-273-8255 and press 1

If you, or someone you know, is in immediate danger, please call 911.


Additional Mental Health Resources

High Country Behavioral Health provides mental health and addiction services in Western Wyoming and Eastern Idaho.

SAMHSA’s National Helpline – 1.800.662.4357 is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.

Wyoming Department of Health

Idaho Department of Health and Welfare

Wyoming-Based Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-TALK

Idaho Suicide Prevention 208-398-4357

National Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-8255


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