Many a time people commit suicide because they think they are incapable of managing a situation that creates a lot of stress for them. Are you troubled by thoughts of ending your life? Do you know someone who harbours suicidal thoughts? Understanding the warning signs is important because you will be able to reach out for help quickly. Furthermore, getting professional treatment helps you to save your life or that of another person having such thoughts.
Do you strongly believe that the problems you are faced with in life cannot be resolved at all? If the answer to this question is a yes, then you may think of committing suicide and ending the pain. However, you must know that it is possible for you to seek help, stay safe, and start living your life once again.
Do you experience any of the following symptoms? Do you know someone who has these warning signs? Anyone with one or more of these symptoms may be having suicidal thoughts.
• Talking about suicide
• Buying things like pills, guns, etc.
• Not making social contact or preferring to be left alone
• Experiencing mood swings (feeling emotionally high one day and terribly discouraged the next day)
• Remaining preoccupied with dying, violence, or death
• A feeling of being trapped or hopelessly helpless in a situation
• An increase in alcohol or drug usage
• Altered normal routines, which include changes in eating and sleeping patterns
• Involvement in self-destructive or highly risky activities (using drugs, driving recklessly, etc.)
• Giving away personal belongings or putting personal affairs in order in the absence of any logical explanation for doing the same
• Saying goodbye to friends and relatives as if they are not going to see them again
• Developing personality changes and being excessively anxious or agitated, especially when experiencing a few of the signs and symptoms listed above
Warning signs may not always be very obvious. Furthermore, the signs and symptoms vary from one person to another. While some people clearly state their intentions, others keep their suicidal thoughts a secret.
Causes and Risk Factors
A person may develop suicidal thoughts due to various reasons. Often, they result from the feeling that you cannot cope when faced with overwhelming life situations. Do you feel as though there is no future for you in this world? If this feeling is very strong, you might be prompted to end your life. This is because of the tunnel vision you develop due to your mental condition. This might also make you believe that an end to all your suffering can be achieved only by killing yourself. Besides, there may be a genetic angle to developing suicidal thoughts.
Although more women attempt to commit suicide, more men than women follow through with their decision to kill themselves. This is because they make use of more-lethal methods, such as a firearm. However, the risk of you committing suicide increases multi-fold if you:
• Have attempted suicide before
• Feel hopeless, absolutely worthless, lonely, or socially isolated
• Go through a life event that is extremely stressful
• Have substance abuse problems
• Have suicidal thoughts
• Have an underlying mental disorder
• Have a medical condition
• Are gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender, and your family is unsupportive
Suicidal thoughts can also occur to children and teenagers, especially if they have witnessed or have been subjected to traumatic events in their life. What a child thinks is serious and insurmountable may not seem so to an adult.
People who harbour thoughts of killing themselves are often treated based on their specific situation. This includes the level of risk for committing suicide and the underlying problems that are likely leading to the development of suicidal thoughts.
If you happen to injure yourself while trying to end your life, then you will be provided with emergency treatment immediately. In non-emergency situations, patients are treated as outpatients. The treatment may include psychotherapy or talk therapy, medications, addiction treatment, and family education and support.
At SoftMind, we do not generally recommend medication to treat people with mild to moderate mental health problems. However, a treatment using a combination of psychotherapies and medications may be helpful in certain situations. Top psychiatrists at SoftMind will advise on the same. We have a team of qualified and highly trained mental health professionals who are competent and provide various therapies, including cognitive behavioural therapy and clinical hypnotherapy.