Preventing Teen Suicide

For teens who are struggling with self-destructive or suicidal thoughts, help is available. Here you will find information and resources for parents, teens, friends and family, teachers, counselors and those who have lost someone to suicide. Suicide is the third leading cause of death in young people between the ages of 14 and 24. Many more attempt suicide with the CDC reporting that in the typical high school classroom one male and two females have probably attempted suicide. An estimated 80 percent of teens report having thought about suicide sometime during the past year. These statistics are alarming and arouse fear and concern in everyone.

However, many suicides can be prevented if young people and those closest to them became familiar with and learn how to respond to the danger signs of a suicidal crisis, both in themselves and in their friends and family members. Parents, teens, friends and family, teachers, counselors, and survivors — people who have lost someone to suicide – can find vital information about the danger signs and helpful tips for responding by reading the following sections. Armed with this information, all of us can turn our worries and concerns into action that can help stem the rising tide of suicide among our young people.

Parents

It’s frightening to imagine that your teenage son or daughter may be experiencing self-destructive thoughts or is at risk for suicide. Suicide is the third leading cause of death among youth between 14 and 24 years of age and the fourth leading cause of death among youth between 10 and 14 years of age. However, most suicides can be prevented. It is important to know the warning signs in people who may be contemplating taking their own lives. Here you can find out what to look for and how to help a teen who is in trouble. READ ON

Teens

If you or someone you know is experiencing self-destructive or suicidal thoughts, it is essential that you seek help by talking to someone, calling the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and seeking the care or counseling needed. It is important to remember that help is available and that symptoms of stress and depression are treatable. Here you can find valuable resources on how you may help yourself or a someone you know out of a suicidal crisis. Remember that you cannot afford to keep your struggles a secret or to keep your friend’s secret if they are at risk. Learn warning signsof suicide and steps you can take to form a safety plan and protect yourself and your loved ones from the threat of suicide. READ ON

LGBT Teens

If you or someone you know is feeling suicidal, it is important to know that there are people out there who can help, and you can and should talk to someone right away. Call The Trevor Lifeline at 866-488-7386, or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and seek the care or counseling needed. It is essential for you to talk to someone about what you are going through and to engage in coping strategies that can keep you safe. READ ON

Concerned Friends and Family

If you have a friend who is distressed, depressed or unusually troubled by family problems, loss of a job, bad grades or recent breakup of a relationship, don’t be afraid to ask if he or she would like to talk with you. Don’t be afraid to ask if he or she is having self-destructive thoughts. Remember that you cannot afford to keep your friend’s secret if they are at risk. You can help save a life. Resources are available that you can use to help someone you know out of a self-destructive state or a suicidal crisis. Here you can learn about the warning signs of suicide and what you can do to help save a life. READ ON

Teachers and Educators

As a teacher you are in the position to reach out to student at risk for suicide. Here you can learn some of the warning signs of suicide and what you can do to help teens who you feel may be in danger of hurting themselves. Treatment for young people struggling with stress, depression or suicidal thoughts is available. Find out how you can get kids the help they need and what you need to know about teen suicide prevention. READ ON

Counselors and Mental Health Professionals

People who are in danger of harming themselves may try to reach out to you as a mental health professional -sometimes directly, sometimes indirectly. As a mental health counselor, you should be alert for imminent warning signs that a patient may be at risk of suicide. Here you can learn more about your role in suicide prevention and the resources available to you as a counselor or therapist. READ ON

Survivors: Those Who Have Lost Someone to Suicide

If you have lost someone to suicide, the most important thing you should know is that you are not alone. There are millions of survivors who, like you, are trying to cope with this heartbreaking loss. Here you can find resources to help you cope with your loss. READ ON

If you or someone you know is in crisis or in need of immediate help, call The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

This is a free hotline available 24 hours a day to anyone in emotional distress or suicidal crisis.

International readers can click here for a list of helplines and crisis centers around the world.

If you are a teen considering suicide or in need of help, you can also call The Trevor Project: 866-4-U-TREVOR (866-488-7386)

About the Author

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