Warning Signs

Recognizing the Signs of Suicidal Behavior

If you observe one or more of these warning signs, especially if the behavior is new, has increased, or seems related to a painful event, loss, or change, it's important to step in or speak up:

  • Talking about death or suicide
  • Seeking methods for self-harm, such as searching online or obtaining a weapon
  • Talking about feelings of hopelessness or having no reason to live
  • Reckless behavior
  • Changes in sleep patterns
  • Increased alcohol or drug use
  • Talking about being a burden to others
  • Uncontrolled anger
  • Putting affairs in order or giving away possessions
  • Showing sudden mood changes
  • Withdrawing from social activities

Remember, these do not necessarily mean a person is thinking about suicide, but they should not be ignored. If you notice any of these signs, it's important to connect and offer help.

An older man looking at an old photograph

Have you heard...?

Speaking about wanting to die, feeling trapped, or experiencing unbearable pain are serious signs of distress:

  • “I feel like I want to die.”
  • “Sometimes I think about going to sleep and not waking up.”
  • “I just can't take it anymore.”
  • “I wish I could disappear forever.”
  • “I don't see any way out of this.”
  • “I'm tired of fighting. I just want it to be over.”
  • “Everyone would be better off without me.”

Such expressions should always be taken very seriously. They indicate a need for immediate help and intervention. If someone you know expresses thoughts like these, it's crucial to respond immediately.

Take Action

If you or someone you know exhibits any of these warning signs, seek help immediately. You can call 18002562522 to reach the Behavioral Health Crisis Line.

Remember, it's okay to ask for help. It's okay to reach out. We want you to STAY.

If it is not a crisis, see more suggestions: Help for Others.  

Risk Factors

Risk factors are characteristics that make it more likely that someone will consider, attempt, or die by suicide. None of them will necessarily cause someone to feel suicidal, but they're important to be aware of. These include:

  • Job or financial loss
  • Loss of relationships
  • Lack of social support and sense of isolation
  • History of trauma or abuse
  • Lack of healthcare, especially mental health and substance abuse treatment
  • Major physical illnesses
  • Family history of suicide
  • Easy access to lethal means
  • Exposure to others who have died by suicide (in real life or via the media and internet)
  • Alcohol and other substance use disorders
  • Living with mental health conditions
  • Previous suicide attempt(s)

More Warning Signs & Risk Factors

What to do

If you're thinking about suicide, please stay and reach out for support.

Call now: 1-800-256-2522