Warning Signs & Symptoms Of Suicide

September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. Suicide is the 12th leading cause of death in the United States, according to The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). In 2020 alone, 45,979 people died by suicide, totaling 1.20 million attempts. When discussing suicide, it can be easy to shy away from specific topics. Regarding awareness, it’s essential to have those tough conversations with friends and family when you sense something is wrong. 

There are many signs and symptoms a person displays when they may be thinking of suicide. Being aware of what to look for and changes you may see when a person is suicidal can be lifesaving. According to the National Institute for Mental Health, here are a few signs to be aware of: 

Talking about:

  1. Wanting to die
  2. Great guilt or shame
  3. Being a burden to others


  1. Empty, hopeless, trapped, or having no reason to live
  2. Extremely sad, more anxious, agitated, or full of rage
  3. Unbearable emotional or physical pain

Changing behavior, such as:

  1. Making a plan or researching ways to die
  2. Withdrawing from friends, saying goodbye, giving away essential items, or making a will
  3. Taking dangerous risks such as driving extremely fast
  4. Displaying extreme mood swings
  5. Eating or sleeping more or less
  6. Using drugs or alcohol more often

We can all prevent suicide with extra attention to those around us. Checking in regularly with your loved ones has the potential for a big difference. If these warning signs apply to you or someone you know, get help as soon as possible, mainly if the behavior is new or has increased recently.

If you feel the need to reach out for help, here are some resources to guide you:

988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline

Call or text 988

Chat at 988lifeline.org

Crisis Text Line

Text “HELLO” to 741741


24/7 Chautauqua County Crisis Hotline at 1-800-724-0461

Don’t feel like talking? Text SUPPORT to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741

24/7 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 

Dunkirk Mental Hygiene Clinic (716) 363-3550

Jamestown Mental Hygiene Clinic (716) 661-8330 

If you want to see a specific topic written about on our blog, please reach out to us via our Social Media Coordinator, Julie Paredes, at paredesj.ctr@chqgov.com or DM/Message us on our social media accounts! We would love to take into consideration what readers are interested in. All social media accounts are linked above, or you can follow us at https://www.facebook.com/MentalHygieneCHQ on Facebook & https://www.instagram.com/mentalhygienechq/ on Instagram! Guess what? We’re also on TikTok! You can find our page here -> https://www.tiktok.com/@chqmentalhygiene 

Published by MentalHygieneCHQ

The purpose of the Department of Mental Hygiene is to plan, develop, and provide accessible, comprehensive, integrated, outcome-based mental hygiene services of the highest quality to residents of Chautauqua County. We are so excited to share with you all our blog! Our blog will cover topics ranging from mental health, education, tips, inspirational stories, and so on! Give us a follow <3

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