Suicide is a growing public health concern, impacting lives at home, in the workplace, and in our communities. More than 1 million Americans attempted suicide in 2019 and 47,500 died by suicide1. That averages 1 death every 11 minutes. As tragic and complex as suicide is, it’s important to know that it’s often preventable. The more we know about this leading cause of death, the more we can help someone who may be at risk, especially as Americans navigate the COVID-19 pandemic and the anxiety, fears and disruption that come with it. The Mindful by Blue KC Suicide Awareness and Prevention webpage is an excellent resource to help educate yourself on this crucial subject.
Most people who take their own lives exhibit one or more warning signs, either through what they say or what they do. Familiarize yourself with the following suicide warning signs. Your knowledge and attention could save a life. If you or someone you know is feeling suicidal, seek immediate help.
National Suicide Prevention and Crisis Lifeline - 988. Anyone can call or text 988 to be connected to the National Suicide Prevention and Crisis Lifeline. The Lifeline, 988, provides 24/7, free and confidential support to help people in distress, provide prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones and offer suggestions to help you find the best practices and professionals in the United States. The number is easy to remember, 988.
Know the Warning Signs of Suicide2
Warning sign: Talk
If a person talks about:
- Killing themselves
- Feeling hopeless
- Having no reason to live
- Being a burden to others
- Feeling trapped
- Unbearable pain
Warning sign: Behavior
Behaviors that may signal risk, especially if related to a painful event, loss, or change:
- Increased use of alcohol or drugs
- Looking for a way to end their life, such as searching online for methods
- Withdrawing from activities
- Isolating from family and friends
- Sleeping too much or too little
- Visiting or calling people to say goodbye
- Giving away prized possessions
Warning sign: Mood
People who are considering suicide often display one or more of the following moods:
- Loss of interest
- Relief/Sudden Improvement
Additional Resources and Education:
Did you know Spira Care has on-site Behavioral Health Consultants? Blue KC members enrolled in a health plan with exclusive access to Spira Care Centers have access to on-site Behavioral Health Consultants for behavioral healthcare needs. Appointments with a Behavioral Health Consultant are available with a referral from a patient’s Spira Care primary care provider. If you would like to meet with a Behavioral Health Consultant, call 913-29-SPIRA (77472).
1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control
2. American Foundation for Suicide Prevention