Pitt County Family Development Corporation. Inc.
|Posted on September 22, 2021 at 12:40 AM|
7 WAYS TO PREVENT SUICIDAL THOUGHTS
September is Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month. I wanted to share this great article by Dr. Joti Samra’s. The message I would like to stress is that there is help for dealing with suicidal thoughts. "You are not alone" If you are having a crisis, reach out to a professional for direction. Here are some proactive things you can do cope.
1. Get treatment for mental health problems: It is important to get treatment for depression, anxiety, and alcohol and drug problems. Just seeing your family doctor may not be enough. It can help to see a mental health specialist, such as a psychologist or a psychiatrist. You can get referrals from your doctor or learn how to find a specialist from one of the referral lines listed on the last page. If you are already receiving treatment, speak up if your treatment plan is not working.
2. Identify high-risk triggers or situations: Think about the situations or factors that increase your feelings of despair and thoughts of suicide. Work to avoid those situations. For example, going to a bar and drinking with friends may increase feelings of depression. If this is a trigger for you, avoid going to a bar or seeing friends who drink.
3. Self-care: Taking good care of yourself is important to feel better. It is important to do the following:
o eat a healthy diet
o get some exercise every day
o get a good night’s sleep
o decrease or stop using alcohol or drugs, as these can make feelings of depression and suicide worse
4. Follow through with prescribed medications: If you take prescription medications, it is important to make sure you take them as your doctor directed. Speak to your doctor if medications aren’t working or if side effects are causing you problems. If you have just begun taking antidepressants, it is important to know that the symptoms of depression resolve at different rates. Physical symptoms such as energy or sleep may improve first. Improvement in mood may be delayed. Speak to your doctor if you are feeling worse.
5. Structure and routine: Keep a regular routine as much as possible, even when your feelings seem out of control. Here are some tips for creating structure in your life:
o wake up at a regular time
o have a regular bedtime
o have planned activities in your day, such as going for a walk or going to the gym
o continue to go to work or school
6. Do things you enjoy: When you are feeling very low, do an activity you enjoy. You may find that very few things bring you pleasure. Think of things you used to enjoy doing at times you didn’t feel so depressed or suicidal. Do these things, even if they don’t bring you enjoyment right now. Giving yourself a break from suicidal thoughts can help, even if it’s for a short time.
7. Think of personal goals: Think of personal goals you have for yourself, or that you’ve had in the past. Some examples are: to read a particular book; travel; get a pet; move to another place; learn a new hobby; volunteer; go back to school; or start a family.
When you’re feeling suicidal it may feel as though it will be impossible to escape those feelings and when they do start to dissipate it may feel as though it will be impossible to prevent the suicidal thoughts from returning in the future.
Check out Dr. Joti Samra’s Coping with Suicidal Thoughts for more resources, information, support, and practical steps to help cope with suicidality. If you or someone you love is at immediate risk reach out to 1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433) for 24-hour support.