Suicidal Behavior Disorder: What Is It?

Posted Sep 5, 2017

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Summary

Suicidal behavior disorder can be treated, just like any physical or mental health disorder.

We used to think of suicide as the result of depression. Or maybe due to a bad life event. While it can be, doctors now look at it very differently. Thoughts or attempts at taking one’s own life is a preventable condition on its own. It’s called suicidal behavior disorder.

Understanding suicidal behavior disorder

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fifth Edition describes it as:

  • A person making an attempt within the last two years
  • The act taken couldn’t be described as self-injury or to get passing relief
  • There was no prep or thoughts before
  • It was not done in a state of confusion
  • It was not done for a religious or political goal

Studies show that 25 percent to 30 percent of people who try suicide will try again within two years. Still, more than three times as many will not. Learning more about this condition might help you save a loved one.

Those at risk

Suicide attempts can happen at any stage in life. The general exception is kids younger than 5. People from many cultures and economic levels try to take their own lives. Suicidal behavior disorder acts like other depressive issues in that it’s different for all.

A major worry is that an attempt can cause life-threatening issues, or new ones that need to be medically handled. Take all talk of suicide seriously. Look for these signs:

  • Mentioning the wish to die and a plan
  • Losing interest in things a person used to like
  • Feeling like a burden to others
  • Changes in eating, sleeping, or amount of drinking/drug use
  • Giving away cherished belongings
  • Extreme mood swings
  • Family history of suicide

While there are often warning signs, sometimes a person who wants to take her own life shows no signs at all.

How to help someone

If a friend or loved one wants to talk about ending his life, listen. Let him talk without judgment from you. Keep in mind:

  • If there is immediate danger, call 911.
  • Let him know you care and that there is help.
  • Stay calm and make sure you are both safe.
  • Try not to overreact or get angry.
  • It’s OK to ask: “Are you thinking about ending your life?”
  • Send or call for help, together.

If she seems open to taking the next steps to get help, offer to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline with her: (800) 273-TALK (8255). Or go with her to talk with a trusted family member, coach, pastor, or friend.

If the threat is made from a text or on social media, call him. If a threat is made over the phone, ask him where he is located. Ask if someone else is there. Keep him on the line until you can get help.

The good news is that doctors can find out if someone has suicidal behavior disorder by asking a series of questions. The answers to those questions can suggest whether someone is at risk of suicide. Suicidal behavior disorder can be treated, just like any physical or mental health issue. Knowing the issue will get the needed care more quickly.

There is hope for recovery from suicidal behavior disorder. There is also hope for being part of the great number of people with suicidal thoughts who stay alive.

Resources

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
https://afsp.org/find-support/

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
(800) 273-TALK (8255)

Screening for Mental Health: Help Yourself, Help Others
http://helpyourselfhelpothers.org/

Suicide Prevention Resource Center
www.sprc.org

Yellow Ribbon International Suicide Prevention Program
www.yellowribbon.org

By Andrea Rizzo, MFA
Source: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fifth Edition (DSM-5); Changing the Conversation from Suicide to Suicide Prevention – A United National Campaign, http://suicidepreventionmessaging.actionallianceforsuicideprevention.org/; National Institute of Mental Health, Suicide Prevention, www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/suicide-prevention/index.shtml#part_153176; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Increase in Suicide in the United States, 1999-2014," www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/databriefs/db241.htm; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Preventing Suicide," www.cdc.gov/Features/PreventingSuicide/index.html
Reviewed by Jenni Myers, LCSW, Director of Corporate Strategy; Dale Seamans, Executive Editor, Thought Leadership; Elizabeth Taylor, CRSS, Peer and Family Support Specialist, Beacon Health Options

Summary

Suicidal behavior disorder can be treated, just like any physical or mental health disorder.

We used to think of suicide as the result of depression. Or maybe due to a bad life event. While it can be, doctors now look at it very differently. Thoughts or attempts at taking one’s own life is a preventable condition on its own. It’s called suicidal behavior disorder.

Understanding suicidal behavior disorder

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fifth Edition describes it as:

  • A person making an attempt within the last two years
  • The act taken couldn’t be described as self-injury or to get passing relief
  • There was no prep or thoughts before
  • It was not done in a state of confusion
  • It was not done for a religious or political goal

Studies show that 25 percent to 30 percent of people who try suicide will try again within two years. Still, more than three times as many will not. Learning more about this condition might help you save a loved one.

Those at risk

Suicide attempts can happen at any stage in life. The general exception is kids younger than 5. People from many cultures and economic levels try to take their own lives. Suicidal behavior disorder acts like other depressive issues in that it’s different for all.

A major worry is that an attempt can cause life-threatening issues, or new ones that need to be medically handled. Take all talk of suicide seriously. Look for these signs:

  • Mentioning the wish to die and a plan
  • Losing interest in things a person used to like
  • Feeling like a burden to others
  • Changes in eating, sleeping, or amount of drinking/drug use
  • Giving away cherished belongings
  • Extreme mood swings
  • Family history of suicide

While there are often warning signs, sometimes a person who wants to take her own life shows no signs at all.

How to help someone

If a friend or loved one wants to talk about ending his life, listen. Let him talk without judgment from you. Keep in mind:

  • If there is immediate danger, call 911.
  • Let him know you care and that there is help.
  • Stay calm and make sure you are both safe.
  • Try not to overreact or get angry.
  • It’s OK to ask: “Are you thinking about ending your life?”
  • Send or call for help, together.

If she seems open to taking the next steps to get help, offer to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline with her: (800) 273-TALK (8255). Or go with her to talk with a trusted family member, coach, pastor, or friend.

If the threat is made from a text or on social media, call him. If a threat is made over the phone, ask him where he is located. Ask if someone else is there. Keep him on the line until you can get help.

The good news is that doctors can find out if someone has suicidal behavior disorder by asking a series of questions. The answers to those questions can suggest whether someone is at risk of suicide. Suicidal behavior disorder can be treated, just like any physical or mental health issue. Knowing the issue will get the needed care more quickly.

There is hope for recovery from suicidal behavior disorder. There is also hope for being part of the great number of people with suicidal thoughts who stay alive.

Resources

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
https://afsp.org/find-support/

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
(800) 273-TALK (8255)

Screening for Mental Health: Help Yourself, Help Others
http://helpyourselfhelpothers.org/

Suicide Prevention Resource Center
www.sprc.org

Yellow Ribbon International Suicide Prevention Program
www.yellowribbon.org

By Andrea Rizzo, MFA
Source: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fifth Edition (DSM-5); Changing the Conversation from Suicide to Suicide Prevention – A United National Campaign, http://suicidepreventionmessaging.actionallianceforsuicideprevention.org/; National Institute of Mental Health, Suicide Prevention, www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/suicide-prevention/index.shtml#part_153176; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Increase in Suicide in the United States, 1999-2014," www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/databriefs/db241.htm; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Preventing Suicide," www.cdc.gov/Features/PreventingSuicide/index.html
Reviewed by Jenni Myers, LCSW, Director of Corporate Strategy; Dale Seamans, Executive Editor, Thought Leadership; Elizabeth Taylor, CRSS, Peer and Family Support Specialist, Beacon Health Options

Summary

Suicidal behavior disorder can be treated, just like any physical or mental health disorder.

We used to think of suicide as the result of depression. Or maybe due to a bad life event. While it can be, doctors now look at it very differently. Thoughts or attempts at taking one’s own life is a preventable condition on its own. It’s called suicidal behavior disorder.

Understanding suicidal behavior disorder

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fifth Edition describes it as:

  • A person making an attempt within the last two years
  • The act taken couldn’t be described as self-injury or to get passing relief
  • There was no prep or thoughts before
  • It was not done in a state of confusion
  • It was not done for a religious or political goal

Studies show that 25 percent to 30 percent of people who try suicide will try again within two years. Still, more than three times as many will not. Learning more about this condition might help you save a loved one.

Those at risk

Suicide attempts can happen at any stage in life. The general exception is kids younger than 5. People from many cultures and economic levels try to take their own lives. Suicidal behavior disorder acts like other depressive issues in that it’s different for all.

A major worry is that an attempt can cause life-threatening issues, or new ones that need to be medically handled. Take all talk of suicide seriously. Look for these signs:

  • Mentioning the wish to die and a plan
  • Losing interest in things a person used to like
  • Feeling like a burden to others
  • Changes in eating, sleeping, or amount of drinking/drug use
  • Giving away cherished belongings
  • Extreme mood swings
  • Family history of suicide

While there are often warning signs, sometimes a person who wants to take her own life shows no signs at all.

How to help someone

If a friend or loved one wants to talk about ending his life, listen. Let him talk without judgment from you. Keep in mind:

  • If there is immediate danger, call 911.
  • Let him know you care and that there is help.
  • Stay calm and make sure you are both safe.
  • Try not to overreact or get angry.
  • It’s OK to ask: “Are you thinking about ending your life?”
  • Send or call for help, together.

If she seems open to taking the next steps to get help, offer to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline with her: (800) 273-TALK (8255). Or go with her to talk with a trusted family member, coach, pastor, or friend.

If the threat is made from a text or on social media, call him. If a threat is made over the phone, ask him where he is located. Ask if someone else is there. Keep him on the line until you can get help.

The good news is that doctors can find out if someone has suicidal behavior disorder by asking a series of questions. The answers to those questions can suggest whether someone is at risk of suicide. Suicidal behavior disorder can be treated, just like any physical or mental health issue. Knowing the issue will get the needed care more quickly.

There is hope for recovery from suicidal behavior disorder. There is also hope for being part of the great number of people with suicidal thoughts who stay alive.

Resources

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
https://afsp.org/find-support/

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
(800) 273-TALK (8255)

Screening for Mental Health: Help Yourself, Help Others
http://helpyourselfhelpothers.org/

Suicide Prevention Resource Center
www.sprc.org

Yellow Ribbon International Suicide Prevention Program
www.yellowribbon.org

By Andrea Rizzo, MFA
Source: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fifth Edition (DSM-5); Changing the Conversation from Suicide to Suicide Prevention – A United National Campaign, http://suicidepreventionmessaging.actionallianceforsuicideprevention.org/; National Institute of Mental Health, Suicide Prevention, www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/suicide-prevention/index.shtml#part_153176; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Increase in Suicide in the United States, 1999-2014," www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/databriefs/db241.htm; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Preventing Suicide," www.cdc.gov/Features/PreventingSuicide/index.html
Reviewed by Jenni Myers, LCSW, Director of Corporate Strategy; Dale Seamans, Executive Editor, Thought Leadership; Elizabeth Taylor, CRSS, Peer and Family Support Specialist, Beacon Health Options

The information provided on the Achieve Solutions site, including, but not limited to, articles, quizzes, and other general information, is for informational purposes only and should not be treated as medical, health care, psychiatric, psychological or behavioral health care advice. Nothing contained on the Achieve Solutions site is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment or as a substitute for consultation with a qualified health care professional. Please direct questions regarding the operation of the Achieve Solutions site to Web Feedback. If you have concerns about your health, please contact your health care provider.  ©2017 Beacon Health Options, Inc.

 

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