Suicide Risk Factors (An H4HK Cheat Sheet)
September is Suicide Prevention Month and we are introducing a series of H4HK Cheat Sheets to help people to better understand the issue of suicide and how they can help. Check back each Tuesday for the rest of the month for additional cheat sheets. This first sheet covers Suicide Risk Factors. The text is included below and a printable pdf version can be accessed by clicking the picture above.
Risk Factors for suicide are those things about a person and their circumstances (many of which they have no control over) that statistically make them more predisposed to attempt suicide. They are different than warning signs which are specific behaviors which may indicate a person is contemplating suicide. It is important to consider both the warning signs (which are current and specific to an individual) and the risk factors (which are historic and based on a person’s circumstances and experiences) when assessing the risk of suicide.
- #1 risk factor is prior suicide attempts
- Personal characteristics which can be risk factors:
- Poor coping and problem-solving skills
- Easily Agitated
- Panic / Anxiety
- Relational Conflict
- Aggressiveness / Violence
- Demographic Risk Factors
- Females more likely to try, Men more likely to die
- White or Native American
- Physical Illness or Disability
- Circumstantial Risk Factors
- Alcohol/Substance Abuse
- Family history of suicide
- Family history of violence or abuse
- Partner conflict
- Firearms in home
- Lack of strong family and social ties
IF YOU OR SOMEONE YOU KNOW IS CONSIDERING SUICIDE, PLEASE CALL THE NATIONAL SUICIDE PREVENTION LIFELINE AT 1-800-273-TALK (8255)!For more resources for learning about, and dealing with suicide, please visit our Hope 4 Hurting Kids Suicide Help Center.