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Recognize the warning signs of suicide

by Siloam Springs Regional Hospital | September 20, 2022 at 6:00 a.m.

September is National Suicide Prevention Month and, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, suicide tends to occur when different experiences and health issues cause feelings of hopelessness or despair. Depression is often associated with suicide, but other mental health conditions can be linked as well. These include anxiety, bipolar disorder, substance abuse and schizophrenia.

The American Psychological Association lists these warning signs that a person may be struggling with suicidal thoughts:

• Talking about wanting to commit suicide, feeling hopeless or wanting to die;

• Withdrawing from friends, loved ones and activities;

• Drastically changing sleeping habits, whether sleeping too much or too little;

• Giving away possessions or visiting others to say goodbye;

• Increasing use of drugs or alcohol.

If you or someone you know exhibits these warning signs, seek help immediately, particularly if they have previously made suicide attempts, suffered childhood trauma or experienced a family history of suicide.

The new 3-digit number for mental health, substance use and suicide crises is 9-8-8, and it's now available nationwide to call or text. When someone with a mental health issue calls this number, trained mental health counselors are there to help. To learn more, visit http://reimaginecrisis.org.

Talk through it

Talking with someone who is considering suicide can be scary, but it's crucial to reach out if someone you love is suffering. Researchers from Western Michigan University have found that as many as 75 percent of all people considering suicide give some warning of intention to a loved one. These individuals frequently seek a way to end the pain they are feeling, and they may believe death is their only option. You can let them know this is not the case.

Be aware of the warning signs and let them know you are available to help. Be direct, open and honest about your concerns for their well-being. Encourage the person to seek professional help, either through a counselor or a physician.

If you or a loved one are looking for a physician, you may visit us online at https://www.nw-physicians.com today.

About Siloam Springs Regional Hospital

Siloam Springs Regional Hospital (SSRH) is a licensed 73-bed facility with 42 private patient rooms. It is accredited by the State of Arkansas Department of Health Services and The Joint Commission. Some services include inpatient and outpatient surgery, emergency medicine, medical, surgical and intensive care units, obstetrics, outpatient diagnostic services and inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation. With more than 50 physicians on the medical staff, Siloam Springs Regional Hospital provides compassionate, customer-focused care. SSRH is an affiliate of Northwest Health. Siloam Springs Regional Hospital is located at 603 N. Progress Ave. in Siloam Springs. For more information, visit NorthwestHealth.com.

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