The causes of suicide are complex and determined by multiple combinations of factors, such as mental illness, substance misuse, painful losses, exposure to violence, and social isolation. 

The information on this page about Suicide and Suicidal Behavior is courtesy from our friends at SAMHSA. 


Suicide Warning Signs for Adults 

Risk is greater if a behavior is new or has increased, and if it seems related to a painful event, loss, or change 

  • Talking about or making plans for suicide. 
  • Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly. 
  • Talking about being a burden to others. 
  • Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain. 
  • Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs. 
  • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live. 
  • Sleeping too little or too much. 
  • Withdrawing or feeling isolated. 
  • Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge. 
  • Displaying extreme mood swings.


Suicide Warning Signs for Youth 

It’s time to take action if you notice these signs in family or friends: 

  • Talking about or making plans for suicide. 
  • Expressing hopelessness about the future. 
  • Displaying severe/overwhelming emotional pain or distress. 
  • Showing worrisome changes in behavior, particularly in combination with the warning signs above, including significant: 
  • Withdrawal from or changing social connections/situations. 
  • Changes in sleep (increased or decreased). 
  • Anger or hostility that seems out of character or out of context. 
  • Recent increased agitation or irritability. 

Learn more about signs of suicide and suicidal behavior from our friends at SAMHSA here.