Suicide is a growing problem – every 40 seconds someone takes their own life according to the World Health Organization (WHO). That’s about 800,000 people worldwide every year.
How to help someone in a crisis:
- Ask direct questions – Even though it’s hard, ask a person directly if they’re thinking about suicide.
- Listen to their answers – People with suicidal thoughts often feel alone, so be sure to let them know that you care deeply about what they have to say.
- Do a safety check – If you’re concerned for their well-being, try removing anything they could use to harm themselves, such as alcohol, drugs, medications, weapons, and even access to a car.
- Don’t keep this a secret – Let them know you’ll help come up with a plan that involves telling a professional who can utilise the many services and resources available to help.
- Ensure they seek professional help – Unless you work in the mental health sector, it’s important to suggest they seek additional help from other people, such as a doctor, counsellor, psychologist or social worker.
For support call Samaritans on 116 123 for free, 24 hours a day. For information visit samaritans.org