It’s National Prevention Week. Day Five’s Focus: Suicide Prevention

Suicide is the third leading cause of death among young people. And in many cases, it is preventable.

“We know very clearly that, with proper identification, proper support and treatments that are suicide-specific, we absolutely can make a difference and save lives,” said David Jobes, head of Catholic University’s Suicide Prevention Lab in an article by NPR. “Most suicidal people who talk about suicide don’t really want to be dead. They’re giving other people lots of indications, lots of warning signs, lots of communications that this is something that they would like to not do, but it requires people identifying that and getting them the proper help.”

About 2,000 people jump off the Golden Gate Bridge to commit suicide every year. Kevin Hines was one of the 1 percent who survived. In this video, he tells his story.

“People don’t get it; I thought I was a burden to everyone around me, because that’s what my brain told me,” he said. “That’s how powerful your brain is.”

Despite a popular myth, talking about suicide doesn’t make people more likely to act on their thoughts. In fact, talking about suicide is especially important in East Texas, where we have some of the highest rates of suicide in the state.

According to the Suicide Prevention Lifeline, some warning signs that someone may be suicidal are:

Talking about wanting to die or to kill themselves.

  • Looking for a way to kill themselves, like searching online or buying a gun.
  • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live.
  • Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain.
  • Talking about being a burden to others.
  • Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs.
  • Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly.
  • Sleeping too little or too much.
  • Withdrawing or isolating themselves.
  • Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge.
  • Extreme mood swings.

If you are thinking about ending your life or are worried about someone you love, you can call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or visit National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.