Know the Warning Signs of Suicide
How do you remember the Warning Signs of Suicide?
Here’s an easy-to-remember mnemonic:
IS PATH WARM?
S Substance Abuse
M Mood Changes
A person in acute risk for suicidal behavior most often will show these Warning Signs
- Threatening to hurt or kill him or herself, or talking of wanting to hurt or kill him/herself; and or,
- Looking for ways to kill him/herself by seeking access to firearms, available pills, or other means; and/or,
- Talking or writing about death, dying or suicide, when these actions are out of the ordinary.
These might be remembered as expressed or communicated ideation. If observed, seek help as soon as possible by contacting a mental health professional or calling 1-800-273-TALK (8255) for a referral.
Expanded Warning Signs:
- Increased substance (alcohol or drug) use
- No reason for living; no sense of purpose in life
- Anxiety, agitation, unable to sleep or sleeping all of the time
- Feeling trapped – like there’s no way out
- Withdrawal from friends, family and society
- Rage, uncontrolled anger, seeking revenge
- Acting reckless or engaging in risky activities, seemingly without thinking
- Dramatic mood changes
If observed, seek help as soon as possible by contacting a mental health professional or calling 1-800-273-TALK (8255) for a referral.
How you can help a friend
- DO LISTEN: Do take your friend seriously
- DO SHOW SUPPORT: Do talk openly, ask questions, stay with the person and tell your friend you care
- DO ACT: Do share the burden, tell someone else, get help immediately
What not to do
- DO NOT IGNORE THE PROBLEM: Don’t avoid the issue, act shocked, joke, disbelieve or argue with the person
- DO NOT KEEP THE SECRET: Don’t keep information about suicide a secret
- DO NOT DELAY ACTION: Don’t leave the person alone or handle the problem alone
It’s OK to ask for help
Mahoning County and Trumbull County
East Palestine, Beloit, Sebring and Western Columbiana County:
Ashtabula Mental Health Hopeline
Adapted from the American Association of Suicidology