National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available
24 hours a day at 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
BY Chris Pfitzer DHHS Office of Communication
In the United States, one person dies by suicide every 14.2 minutes, making suicide the 10th leading cause of death overall and the 3rd leading cause of death for youth and young adults between the ages of 10 and 24. Each year in North Carolina, more than 1,000 individuals die as a result of suicide and more than 14,000 people are treated or hospitalized for self-inflicted wounds.
“Help is available to anyone that may be in crisis,” said DHHS Secretary Aldona Wos. “If you are having suicidal thoughts or you know someone who is having thoughts of hurting themselves or others, it is imperative that you ask for help.”
There are several sources for information and assistance for people that may think they know someone that is considering suicide.
- The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
- The DHHS Division of Public Health sponsors a website, www.itsok2ask.com, aimed at supporting youth. The site is specifically designed for youth to share information about suicide prevention and reduce the stigma of mental health disorders.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is staffed with trained professionals and can help with a wide range of issues including substance abuse, economic worries, relationship and family problems, sexual orientation, illness, trauma from abuse, bullying, depression, mental and physical illness, and even loneliness.
Often there may be signs that someone is at risk for suicide. The risk is greater if a behavior is new or has increased and if it seems related to a painful event, loss, or change.
If you or someone you know exhibits any of the following signs, seek help as soon as possible by contacting a mental health professional or by calling the Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
- Talking about wanting to die or to kill themselves.
- Looking for a way to kill themselves, such as searching online or buying a gun.
- Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live.
- Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain.
- Talking about being a burden to others.
- Increasing their use of alcohol or drugs.
- Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly.
- Giving away their possessions.
- Sleeping too little or too much.
- Withdrawing or isolating themselves.
- Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge.
- Displaying extreme mood swings.