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Roughly every 11 minutes, someone in the United States dies by suicide. It is a leading cause of death in this country. The number of people who think about or attempt suicide is even higher.
Some people who die by suicide had a known mental health issue like depression, while others were seemingly “happy.” It is always shocking to those left behind. How can we intervene early and recognize an issue before the worst happens?
Knowing and acting on the warning signs of suicide can be lifesaving. The majority of people thinking about suicide give some clues or warning of their intentions to a friend or family member. Pay attention to what someone says or does and look for changes in feelings and behavior.
Some warning signs that someone may be thinking about suicide include:
Suicidal thoughts or actions are a sign of extreme distress and should not be ignored. Once warning signs are identified, action should be taken immediately. The National Institute of Mental Health provides 5 action steps for helping someone.
NorthShore – Edward-Elmhurst Health is committed to taking steps to prevent suicide and raise awareness for mental health.
If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, 24/7 help is available: