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Suicide Awareness and Prevention

988 is the national Suicide & Crisis Lifeline

As of July 2022, 988 is active across the United States. This new and shorter phone number is easier to remember so people can access mental health crisis services. Click below to learn more about 988.

Learn more about 988

Everyone can help prevent suicide

Having an understanding about issues related to suicide and mental health can help in suicide prevention, help others in crisis, and change the conversation around suicide. Providing access to support services, talking about suicide, reducing access to means of self-harm, and following up with loved ones are also shown to be effective.

If you or someone you care about is in crisis or displays signs of suicide, please seek help immediately.

Common warning signs

Some signs can be more meaningful if the behavior is new, has increased, or may be related to a painful event, loss or change.

  • Talk – if a person talks about feeling hopeless, having no reason to live, being a burden to others, feeling trapped, unbearable pain, killing themselves.
  • Behavior – behaviors that may signal risk include increased use of alcohol or illicit drugs, researching ways to end their lives, withdrawing from activities, isolating from others, sleeping too much or too little, visiting or calling people to say goodbye, giving away possessions, aggression, fatigue.
  • Mood – people who are considering suicide often display one or more of the following moods: depression, anxiety, loss of interest, irritability, humiliation, shame, agitation, anger, relief, sudden improvement.

Common risk factors1

Risk factors are characteristics that make it more likely that someone will consider, attempt, or die by suicide. They can’t cause or predict a suicide attempt but are important to be aware of.

  • Mental disorders, particularly mood disorders, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders, and certain personality disorders
  • Alcohol and other substance use disorders
  • Hopelessness
  • Impulsive and/or aggressive tendencies
  • History of trauma or abuse
  • Major physical illnesses
  • Previous suicide attempt(s)
  • Family history of suicide
  • Job or financial loss
  • Loss of relationship(s)
  • Easy access to lethal means
  • Local clusters of suicide
  • Lack of social support and sense of isolation
  • Stigma associated with asking for help
  • Lack of healthcare, especially mental health and substance abuse treatment
  • Cultural and religious beliefs, such as the belief that suicide is a noble resolution of a personal dilemma
  • Exposure to others who have died by suicide (in real life or via the media and Internet)

Where to get help

Free and confidential support is available 24/7 for people in distress. If you or a loved one is in crisis or struggling, consider reaching out to any of the following organizations:

988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline
Call, text or chat: 988

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)
NAMI Helpline: Call 1-800-950-6264 or Text 62640 for chat support

SAMHSA Substance Abuse Support Helpline
Call 1-800-662-4357 or Text Zip Code to: 435748

South Central Crisis Center
24/7 mental health support
Call 507-344-0621

Trans Lifeline
Trans Peer Support
Call 877-565-8860

Trevor Project
LGBTQ Youth Support
Call 866-488-7386 or Text 678678

UHD provides Mental Health services in our Blue Earth and Fairmont clinics.
To schedule an appointment call 507-526-7388.

1 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, ‘Know the Risk Factors’,, , (accessed Sept. 2022).