suicidewarningtoolSuicide Warning Tool: Is path warm?

People sometimes contemplate suicide because of overwhelming things in their life, depression, loss, or for many other reasons. But being aware of some signs and symptoms can help to prevent suicide. Often, preventing a loved one from suicide can depend on the ability of individuals in their life to recognize distress and risky behaviors. Recently, the American Association of Suicidology developed a simple tool that is available for everyone to use to remember the warning signs of suicide. This helpful tool is called “IS PATH WARM” and outlines the key points to remember:

I  – Ideation (suicidal thoughts)

S – Substance Abuse

P – Purposelessness

A – Anxiety

T – Trapped

H – Hopelessness/Helplessness

W – Withdrawal

A – Anger

R – Recklessness

M – Mood changes

The American Association of Suicidology also indicated that other signs and behaviors to be aware of including:

  • Direct and indirect verbal expressions: “I don’t want to live anymore”, “there is nothing to live for anymore”, “people will be better off without me”
  • Dramatic changes in mood
  • Loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities
  • Agitation
  • Increase in drug and alcohol use
  • Risk taking behavior
  • Aggressive, impulsive and/or violent acts
  • Expressions of hopelessness and purposelessness
  • Lack of self care or outright neglect of self
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Feeling tired most of the time
  • Gaining or losing a significant amount of weight
  • Changes in eating and sleeping pattern
  • Withdrawal from family, friends, and interests
  • Giving away prize possessions and/or making a will; tidying up personal affairs; writing notes; making notes on belongings
  • Reconnecting with old friends and extended family as if to say goodbye
  • Previous unresolved or recent suicide attempt(s)
  • Unusual happiness and peace after an intense period of turmoil and displaying the above characteristics

If a loved one is showing these symptoms, it is important to get help from a trustworthy source and to let other loved ones know as soon as possible. Doing so could prevent suicide and help the loved one find peace and solace and heal from suicidal thoughts and behaviors.


Source: yourlifecounts.org

talkingaboutdepressionTalking About Depression

Unfortunately, depression seems to be lurking everywhere. It’s become more common among teens and the elderly and remains a problem for many adults. Talking to those you love about their depression can be difficult. Individuals may become defensive, angry, or even more depressed. The website helpguide.org gives guidelines concerning the discussion about depression. Most individuals want to help those they love to overcome or lessen their depression and the following ideas and suggestions can be very helpful. However, it is key to remember that giving advice won’t go as far as simply being a compassionate listener. Usually, individuals with depression need someone to listen to their concerns and feelings without judgment. As a good friend or loved one, the simple act of listening, maybe over and over, can really help those who are struggling with depression.

The following is taken directly from helpguide.org and can significantly benefit the process of opening up a conversation with someone dealing with depression:

Ways to start the conversation:

  • “I have been feeling concerned about you lately.”
  • “Recently, I have noticed some differences in you and wondered how you are doing.”
  • “I wanted to check in with you because you have seemed pretty down lately.”
  • Questions you can ask:
  • “When did you begin feeling like this?”
  • “Did something happen that made you start feeling this way?”
  • “How can I best support you right now?”
  • “Have you thought about getting help?”
  • “You are not alone in this. I am here for you.”
  • “You may not believe it now, but the way you’re feeling will change.”
  • “You are important to me.”

Being supportive of a loved one with depression will go a long way. This can take patience and extra compassion, but allowing that person to feel loved is key to them overcoming depression.

Source: helpguide.org


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