Suicidal ideation can be an emergency, and as such any reported suicidal ideation should be taken seriously. There are a number of risk factors and warning signs to consider when working with a child and the Headspace resource Suicidal Ideation outlines these risks and signs.
Signs a young person may be suicidal:
- threatening to hurt themselves by suicide
- looking for ways to suicide
- deliberately hurting themselves e.g scratching, cutting, burning
- talking or writing about death, dying or suicide
- feeling trapped, like there’s no way out
- rage, anger, seeking revenge
- acting recklessly, engaging in risky activities
- increasing alcohol or drug use
- withdrawing from friends, family or society
- anxiety, agitation, changes in sleep or appetite
- dramatic changes in mood
- no reason for living, no sense of purpose in life.
It is important to seek assistance from mental health professionals in collating a safety plan for a young person. A robust plan with the safety and support network is vital for safety and recovery.
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