Urgent Care Los Angeles | Suicide prevention:
Risk Factors and Warning Signs to look out for
While many people think they may know the signs of suicidal ideation, it may not look like what we are used to seeing in the movies or on tv. Suicide is often associated with mental disorders and abusers of alcohol and drugs are often common victims of self-harming.
In some cases, there is a specific situation that is launched into the “tipping point” towards suicide. The CDC reports that 54% of those who lost their life from suicide did not have a known mental health condition, but dealt with mental health challenges. Substance abuse was reported as the second top reason for suicide, the top reason being relationship problems.
- Previous suicide attempt(s).
- Family history of suicide
- Alcohol and/or other drug use
- Mood disorders such as depression or bipolar disorder.
- Access to lethal means such as having a firearm in the home or access to large doses of unsecured prescription medications
- Big losses or other traumatic events such as a breakup or a death. This can also include academic failures, legal difficulties, and financial difficulties.
- A history of trauma and/or abuse
- Chronic physical illness or chronic pain.
- Exposure to the suicidal behavior of others.
- Social isolation.
- Historical trauma.
- Stigma associated with seeking help.
- Talking or writing about death, dying or suicide
- Feelings of powerlessness or having no reason to live, no sense of purpose in life
- verbalizing phrases such as “It would be better if I wasn’t here” or “I want out”
- Increased alcohol and/or drug use
- Isolation from friends, family and community
- Partaking in reckless behavior or out of the ordinary risky activities
- Significant mood changes/swings
- Sharings feelings of being trapped or a burden to others
If you notice any of the above in someone you know, or yourself, there are things you can do to help. If this is an urgent matter, do not hesitate to contact a suicide prevention line such as the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline or locate your nearest urgent care center. If you are local to the Los Angeles area, the Vermont Urgent Care Los Angeles may be a good resource for you.
There are preventative measures you and your loved ones can take if dealing with suicidal ideation.
Strategies for Suicide Prevention
- Help to strengthen economic supports by strengthening household financial security and stabilizing housing
- Create a protective environment by reducing access to lethal means from person at risk of suicide. Help to create healthy culture and reduce substance use through community-based policies and practices
- Suggest healthy connections and peer norms via community members and group activities
- Promote coping and problem-solving skills through social-emotional learning programs and helping families to improve their familial relationships
- Be able to identity and support those who are at-risk. Train gatekeeps, be able to respond to crisis, and plan for safety and follow-up after an attempt. Have therapeutic approaches on-hand.
- Intervene after an attempt and report and message about suicide safety
These protective factors are characteristics that decrease the likelihood of individuals considering, attempting, or dying by suicide.