In America, the 10th leading cause of death is suicide, in Canada, it’s the 9th. However, in Canada suicide ranks as the 2nd leading cause of death for people in between the ages of 15 & 35.

Suicide isn’t the result of one day of sadness. There are often warning signs and symptoms that occur long before a person takes their own life. Take the time to learn the signs and how you can help a person who is considering suicide.

Here are the five most common signs someone is considering suicide:

1. Self Harm

  • They threaten to hurt or kill themselves, or they talk about wanting to hurt or kill themselves
  • They seek ways to kill themselves (through seeking access to firearms, pills, or other methods)

2. Extreme Depression

  • They are morbid in their speech, which is out of character for them
  • They express feeling trapped
  • They say they have no purpose in their life
  • They feel like they are a burden

3. Uncharacteristic mood swings

  • They have uncontrollable anger
  • They act recklessly and don’t consider the future
  • They increase their usage of drugs or alcohol

4. Withdrawing

  • They isolate themselves from their friends or family
  • They experience changes in sleep patterns, either experiencing insomnia or sleeping all the time.

5. Tying up loose ends

  • They call up (friends or family) to say goodbye
  • They put their affairs in order
  • They make changes to their will

Here is how you should respond:

  1. Take them seriously! They aren’t joking, but rather telling you their plans.
  2. Call 911
  3. If the danger is immediate, call a suicide hotline. The Kids help phone is available 24/7. You can call them at 1-800-668-6868
  4. Encourage them to keep talking and to seek professional help
  5. Don’t give up. Keep checking in with them. Let them know you’re there for them, and that you care for them. Tell them that you want them to be safe and healthy and that professional help is the best way to do that.

If you or someone you know is experiencing or showing any of the above signs, there may be immediate danger and you should call  1-800-668-6868.

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