10 Signs of Suicide Risk
Depression is a serious condition, and it's especially dangerous for older adults. According to WebMD, only 1 in 10 depressed Americans who are 65 and older actually get proper medication and therapy.
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) institute reports that the 65+ age group accounted for 16% of all suicides in 2004, a disproportionate number since that age group makes up only 12% of the US population. Even more upsetting, white males in the 85+ age group had more than 4 times the suicide rate as the general population.
There is hope. If found early, depression can be easily treatable. As with any other serious illness, instead of ignoring warning signs, a person possibly suffering from depression should see a doctor or mental health professional as soon as possible and get the proper treatment.
Do you think you or a loved one may be depressed or considering suicide? According to Barb Delker, a licensed marriage and family therapist in Owensboro, Kentucky, these are the 10 signs of suicide risk you need to be aware of:
- Talking about or threatening to hurt oneself.
- Obtaining firearms, pills, or other means of suicide.
- Talking about death or suicide when thats out of the ordinary for the person.
- Feeling hopeless, rage, anger, or revenge.
- Acting reckless or engaging in risky activities.
- Feeling trapped, like theres no way out of a situation. Seeing no reason for going on.
- Increased substance abuse.
- Withdrawing from family, friends, or the community.
- Feeling anxious, unable to sleep, sleeping all the time, which are symptoms of depression.
- Dramatic mood changes.
Delker said a person should be "direct and talk openly, and be willing to listen" if someone they know is contemplating suicide.