Suicide is on the rise. Did you know that suicide is one of the leading causes of death in the North America? This alarming statistic means that your loved ones, your coworkers, or your day-to-day acquaintances may be silently suffering from suicidal depression.
When somebody is suffering from the signs of suicidal depression, it’s imperative to speak with a professional who has the appropriate training to deal with this. There are counsellors, therapists, and telehealth platforms that specialize in providing mental health remedies. These professionals can give you tips on how to approach and encourage the affected person to seek medical help.
Suicide affects everybody around us, but this tragic act is preventable if you know what signs of suicidal depression to look for and understand what to do. Here are eight signs to look out for in your loved one to make sure they aren’t thinking of or planning suicide:
1. Already Has a Mental Illness or Addiction
Suicide is a serious consequence of people who already have mental illnesses or addictions. These people (not all of them) are much more likely to turn to suicide as an answer to the horrible feelings and emotions that come with mental illnesses ranging from major depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder and much more.
The key here is to make sure that these individuals are getting their mental illnesses followed by a healthcare professional so they can be on the right medication and therapy, so suicide does not become something they start to think about.
2. Mood Swings
Not only is the individual depressed, but they may also be angry at the situation, anxious over their decision to take their own life, or just sad that it’s come to this for them. They may be very moody and not know how to handle their family and friends and be irritable or aggressive. However, once the individual becomes calm, it may be that they’ve accepted taking their own life and have come to terms with it.
Suicide may be what the person believes in the only answer and gets a sense of calm knowing that it will all be over soon. The individual in question may just want to sleep the day away and avoid any social contact. It may just be too hard to speak and have conversations with their loved ones.
3. They Become More and More Withdrawn
When the person in question no longer wants to see family and friends, this can indicate that they’re planning suicide. Further to the last point, it may just be too difficult to carry on a conversation with someone you love knowing that you plan to leave them.
4. Starts to Act Recklessly
If someone suddenly has no fear of consequences and starts to act recklessly, whether it be driving fast, engaging in illicit sex, gambling away their life savings, taking a lot of drugs or drinking recklessly and to excess, reckless actions are signs of suicidal depression that cannot be taken lightly.
Does your loved one feel that their future is hopeless? Do they say things like “I’m going nowhere; I’m such a failure” or “The world would be better off without me”? This indicates hopelessness and is yet another sign that this person may be thinking of suicide.
6. Has a Pre-occupation With Death
This is one of the more obvious signs of suicidal depression. Sometimes when people are suicidal, they can’t help but talk about death and suicide. They obsess about death. They may even start researching a way that they can kill themselves. When they get really upset, they may even let plans of their suicide slip. This is a red flag and action needs to be taken immediately to keep the person from harming themselves.
7. Starts to Clean Out Their Belongings
When loved ones start to do a “spring cleaning” of sorts to get their affairs in order, they may be thinking of suicide. If they have a prized possession that they are trying to give away to a loved one to “care for them”, this may be an indicator that they plan to leave this earth soon by taking their own life. Maybe they even start selling their things,
8. Your Loved One Starts to Make Plans
You may see your loved one suddenly have an interest in updating their will, when they didn’t before. This is a clear fire sign that they don’t plan to be around much longer.
If you or someone you know is thinking about suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (800-273-8255). This line is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a week. There is also a suicide prevention app called the LifeLine App that “offers access and guidance to support for those suffering in crisis and those who have suffered the devastating loss of a loved one from suicide.” This app can help you help those who need it most. You can download it for free on the Apple Store or Google Play store.