The World Health Organization (WHO) has estimated that about 1 million individuals commit suicide every year. However, research finds that at least two-thirds of those who attempt suicide give prior hints. All one needs is to be empathetic to people around us and to recognize those symptoms in time.
Suicide is a desperate attempt by those who are blinded by self-loathing and isolation. Despite their overwhelming urge to end things, there is a flicker of hope in everyone, and we need to keep them motivated to live.
Look out for the signs:
You may find that the suicidal person increasingly talk about negative things. Many of the behavioural changes are accompanied by painful events in life. Their conversation or behaviour are often indicative of a warning.
Negative conversation may centre on the following:
- Futility of living
- Feeling of being a burden
- Trapped in a situation
- Intolerable physical or mental pain
Action speaks louder than words:
- Increased reliance on drugs and alcohol
- Researching on ways to commit suicide
- Keeping aloof from friends and family
- Sleeping too little or too much
- Withdrawal from social activities
- Unexplained aggression
- Visiting people or bidding goodbye to few
- Clearing off debts and getting affairs in order
Other warning signs:
- Loss or increased appetite
- Loss of energy and increased sluggishness
- Loss of concentration
The effectiveness of symptoms playing a role in being able to ward off the fatal event is disputable. While, some believe that these symptoms translate to an attempt of suicide, others think that these are just the fleeting thoughts of a human mind.
It need not be only someone close to the individual, who spots the signs; it can be an acquaintance or a colleague. It is advisable that if you know anyone who is a bit off for the last few days, sit down and talk. If you feel necessary, don’t hesitate to suggest professional psychological counselling.