January 10, 2004

Suicide Prevention

People try to kill themselves due to the following two reasons -

1. When the stress becomes more than we can handle. The person gets depressed and there is a feeling of hopelessness...

2. For people with SZ, it could be the voices telling the person to kill himself/herself. The person could have delusions of grandiosity and a religious outlook towards life and the sayings of the bible, vedas...

For a person with SZ, the risk is especially large since the person could be hearing voices, and also be depressed at the same time with feelings of hopelessness...Statistically speaking, 40% of people with SZ attempt suicide, of which 10% succeed.

Now we have to make sure that we prevent anyone from taking his or her life. The most important aspects to consider and steps to take are -

1. If a person mentions that he/she is depressed, it should be taken seriously and the person should be asked whether he/she has thought of suicide. Accordingly, professional treatment should be sought and given. It is a myth that people joke about killing themselves. If people say that they plan to do it, it means that they will.

2. If a person ever mentions or indulges in self harm, or talks about suicide, it is necessary to do as above. The only reason for self harm besides suicide is that the person has gone through trauma, and the self injury helps in alleviating the anger he/she has for herself/himself due to the traumatic incident.

3. If a person has SZ, he/she may not mention about suicidal feelings to anyone due to social withdrawal. The best way to find out and deal with such a situation is to have someone who is close to the person, and whom the person likes even when he/she is hallucinating, to talk to him/her and find out what the person has been thinking about. Besides this home technique, the best bet is to have a professional counsellor or psychiatrist talk to the person since they are adequately trained to handle and respond to the common schizophrenic beliefs and paranoia.

Finally, I would like to advise, "NEVER take anyone's word of being depressed or having suicidal thoughts lightly. They are not the worried healthy people. They are not the weaklings on the earth. They are in a situation that makes them believe that nothing is possible, and they are in this situation because of their neurobiology, because of the way their brain works. They need all the support that you can give them, and all the love that you can give them. They need to believe, believe that it is possible, possible to see the light again, to come out of the place where no ray of light reaches, where there is nothing to blind their eyes. And you can do this only when you understand and take things seriously, and when you yourself believe, believe in the Truth, only the light can dispel the darkness, you have to be the light, you have to believe...

Posted by puzli at January 10, 2004 06:06 AM


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