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How to notice the signs of someone who might be suicidal

Not everyone who is contemplating suicide lets their friends or family know how they are feeling, but there are some signs and situations to look out for.

Notice the signs

  • complaining of feeling hopeless
  • talking about feeling trapped
  • self-harming
  • misusing drugs or alcohol more than usual
  • withdrawing from friends and family
  • anxiety
  • trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
  • sudden lift in mood after being depressed
  • losing interest in most things, including own appearance
  • a pattern of sudden rage
  • risky behaviour with little concern about the consequences
  • sorting out possessions or making a will


Some situations can increase the risk of suicide, these include: 

  • drug and alcohol misuse
  • history of trauma or abuse
  • unemployment
  • social isolation
  • poverty
  • poor social conditions
  • imprisonment
  • violence
  • family breakdown