- 1 What is Suicide?
- 2 Warning Signs for Suicide
- 3 How to communicate with someone who is having Suicidal Thoughts?
- 4 What can Cause Suicide?
- 5 Treatment for Suicidal Thoughts
- 6 Prevention of Suicidal Thoughts
- 7 Conclusion
- 8 A Word From Mantra Care
What is Suicide?
The world is a beautiful place. There are so many reasons to live and be happy, yet some people choose to end their lives prematurely. Suicide is an unfortunate reality in today’s world. It doesn’t matter how old you are, what gender you identify with, or where in the world you live; suicide affects everyone. Many people think that suicide is a quick and easy way to escape the pain and hardships of life, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth. Suicide is an act of desperation, it’s not just about feeling sad or depressed for a few days.
Warning Signs for Suicide
Suicidal thoughts don’t come into one’s mind suddenly and the behavior of a person becomes very clear that he/she is going to do something. There are some warning signs that makes everyone understand that a person is having those suicidal thoughts:
People start feeling hopeless. They believe that nothing can help them with their problems.
People start withdrawing from others. They don’t want to spend time with friends or family. They feel alone and are not interested in anything at all any more even things they used to enjoy previously.
When people are thinking about suicide, there is a chance for sudden changes in behavior after being stable before this point in time.
There could be an increase in drug/alcohol abuse, risk-taking behaviors like reckless driving, sexual promiscuity (like unprotected sex), etc.,
If people start feeling aggressive or agitated, this can be a sign that they are about to do something harmful.
Having Mood Swings
The mood swings of people might indicate that something is wrong as well. People can be very emotional and change their feelings from one minute to another; they feel happy, sad, or angry for no apparent reason at all.
Talking About Death
If someone starts talking a lot about dead people and things like: “I wish I wasn’t here anymore”, “Everybody would be better off if I was gone”, it’s time to take the situation seriously. There are good chances this person will commit suicide soon.
Giving Away Prized Possessions
People who are considering suicide might give away their prized possessions to friends and family. That means they want the people closest to them in life to have meaningful things from their past.
How to communicate with someone who is having Suicidal Thoughts?
If someone you care about seems unusually sad and withdrawn for several days, you can follow these steps to communicate with him or her:
- Be there for them, don’t abandon them.
- Don’t push too hard though; sometimes people just want space for a little while.
- Express your concern without judgment by saying something like “I’ve been worried about you lately because it seems like nothing makes you happy anymore.”
- Don’t be afraid to ask if they are thinking about suicide.
- Try and find out what is upsetting them so much, but avoid saying things that will put guilt or blame on them as this can make their situation worse.
- Don’t try to take on the task by yourself because acting impulsively could result in making a bad situation even worse.
- There’s no point in telling someone who has experienced violence and abuse by another person what he/she should do or how he/she feels. It won’t help at all since this individual probably doesn’t even trust him/her anymore after everything s/he had been through before. So instead of giving advice, just listen with compassion while offering your full attention without judgment.
What can Cause Suicide?
Sometimes there is not just a single reason for someone taking their life. There can be various reasons for someone taking their life such as:
- Not being able to cope with the stress and challenges life presents them with.
- If someone experiences the death by suicide of a loved one. This can contribute to having suicidal thoughts themselves because it’s brought up their own feelings about death and ends some people have in mind.
- Sometimes mental health conditions can cause Suicide such as Anxiety Disorder, Depression, and other mood disorders like Schizophrenia and psychosis. Sometimes the individual might not have been diagnosed with a particular mental health issue but may still be experiencing suicidal thoughts.
- Substance abuse disorder (drug and alcohol addiction), sometimes after drug addiction people think to take their lives to end their suffering.
- Being a victim or survivor of abuse, rape, war, and other traumas. People who are victims of these can have suicidal thoughts because they feel unworthy of being alive.
- Having an illness like cancer or other physical illnesses where there is no cure yet; which leads them to feel hopeless and not wanting for prolonging their pain anymore (this happens often with dying patients.
- Emotional trauma can also cause people to think about suicide. Like losing someone very close, etc.
Treatment for Suicidal Thoughts
If you’re struggling with suicidal thoughts or feel like harming yourself, there are many treatment options to help you cope with your situation. These treatment options are:
Doctors prescribe medications to help regulate and stabilize moods. Some medications can also treat the symptoms of depression, which is a common cause of suicidal thoughts. Antidepressants are often prescribed for these problems. They may help alleviate the feelings of despair that go along with depression or other mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder or schizophrenia.
Antidepressant drugs can help to treat the symptoms of depression, which is a common cause of suicidal thoughts. These medications may help alleviate feelings of despair that go along with being depressed or having other mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder or schizophrenia.
With proper medication and treatment, many people who have suicidal thoughts can be helped to cope with their emotional pain in healthy ways.
Psychotherapy is another common treatment option. It is also referred to as “talk therapy” because it involves talking with a mental health professional such as a psychologist or psychiatrist. They can help people find healthy ways of coping with suicidal thoughts and feelings.
Psychotherapy can help those struggling with suicidal thoughts cope in healthier ways outside of medication intervention alone. When the patient feels safe, they may begin to open up about their situation and express themselves more clearly. This often leads to increased self-awareness which can help them determine the root cause of why they are feeling suicidal in the first place.
Types of Therapies
There are three main types of psychotherapy that have proven effective in helping those struggling with suicidality cope in healthier ways:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a type of psychotherapy that focuses on the relationship between thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Through CBT, therapists help patients to understand how their thoughts influence emotions and actions by encouraging them to recognize distortions in thinking which can lead to negative feelings. The goal is for patients to be able to recognize these distortions and correct them in order to break out of the cycle that feeds into suicidal thoughts.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a type of psychotherapy that is often used with patients who have a borderline personality disorder but also works well for those dealing with suicidal thoughts. DBT involves individual and group therapy where the therapist teaches coping skills to help them deal more effectively with their emotions.
Behavioral therapy (BT) is another common treatment option. It can help people replace dangerous or unhealthy behaviors with safer and more positive ones, such as replacing thoughts of suicide with healthier alternatives like deep breathing to manage stress.
These changes in your daily life can surely bring changes to your thoughts:
- Regular exercise can help reduce stress and anxiety while also releasing mood-enhancing chemicals in the brain to improve your outlook. Exercise can be anything from taking up an activity that you enjoy like running or playing sports with friends, to simply going for daily walks around your neighborhood during lunchtime.
- Eat good food: By eating healthier foods such as fresh produce and lean protein instead of junk food which can lead to weight gain, you will feel better about yourself overall both physically and emotionally.
- Sleep Well: Sleep is a natural way to help your body and mind recover from a stressful day. It also helps regulate emotions so that you do not feel overwhelmed by the intensity of strong feelings such as sadness or anger which can be triggers for suicidal thoughts.
Prevention of Suicidal Thoughts
No one wants to think about the possibility of a loved one committing suicide, but it is a real threat. There are various ways by which you can prevent these suicidal thoughts. Anyone can save the life of anyone by these steps and these are very simple.
Talk to Them
This is something anyone can do and it’s very simple – all you have to do is be there for another human being who might need help with their mental health or addiction problems. If they’re not ready to get professional assistance, at least just show them kindness and love by listening when they want to talk. It could save someone’s life.
Stop the Stigma
One of the biggest factors in preventing suicide is to reduce social isolation and decrease public perception that it is a shameful thing. When people feel alone, they are more likely to become depressed and contemplate suicide. Encourage friends or family members who may be feeling down to reach out for help before their feelings get worse.
Seek Professional Help
If a family member or friend is showing warning signs for suicide, you should seek mental health treatment immediately. Your primary care doctor can be a good starting point as they have an understanding of your current situation and may be able to provide referrals.
Build Social Support
Having close friends who understand what you feel and are there to listen is extremely important. Loneliness can lead people to feel trapped and hopeless, which increases the risk for suicidal thoughts.
Participate in Social Activities
Be sure that your loved ones have interests outside of their homes or work by getting them into hobbies like sports, dancing, hiking, etc. It will be more difficult for them to feel isolated when they are engaged in activities.
Know the Warning Signs for Suicide
There are certain behaviors that indicate a person is thinking about hurting themselves, including withdrawing from friends or family members, giving away possessions, behaving recklessly or impulsively, etc. If you see these changes happening with your friend, talk to them immediately about these changes.
For the people who are struggling with thoughts of suicide, please reach out for help. You don’t have to go through this alone and there is always hope. There’s no shame in asking for help so if you need someone to talk with or just want some resources on how to get started.
A Word From Mantra Care
Your mental health — your psychological, emotional, and social well-being — has an impact on every aspect of your life. Positive mental health essentially allows you to effectively deal with life’s everyday challenges.
At Mantra Care, we have a team of therapists who provide affordable online therapy to assist you with issues such as depression, anxiety, stress, relationship, OCD, LGBTQ, and PTSD. You can take our mental health test. You can also book a free therapy or download our free Android or iOS app.