If you or someone you know is in need of emotional support or help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Trained helpers are available 24/7.

1-800-273-TALK (8255)

© National Council for Suicide Prevention 

Learn The Signs

Home > Take 5 Steps > Learn The Signs

Emergency Warning Signs

Call 911 or the emergency service number of your country if you see or hear the following: 

  • Someone threatening to hurt or kill themselves or talking of wanting to die.

  • Someone looking for ways to kill themselves by seeking access to weapons or other lethal items (this can be online searches or physically looking for something in the moment of despair).

  • Someone talking or writing about death, dying or suicide.

Warning Signs of Suicide

Contact a mental health professional or hotline if you hear or see someone exhibiting one or more of these behaviors:​

  • Talking about wanting to die or to kill themselves

  • Looking for a way to kill themselves, like searching online or buying a gun

  • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live

  • Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain

  • Talking about being a burden to others

  • Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs

  • Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly

  • Sleeping too little or too much

  • Withdrawing or isolating themselves

  • Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge

  • Extreme mood swings

Suicide Helpline Information

In the US, Lifeline is available 24/7. Use this list of helpline resources if you or someone you know is suicidal.

This list of Warning Signs for Suicide was developed by an expert review and consensus process informed by a review of relevant research and literature. Additional information about the warning signs can be found in the following published article: Rudd, M. D., Berman, A. L., Joiner, T. E., Jr., Nock, M. K., Silverman, M. M., Mandrusiak, M., et al. (2006). Warning signs for suicide: Theory, research, and clinical applications. Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior, 36(3), 255-262.

 
Instructions: Take a few minutes to learn the warning signs of suicide. Once you've finished, click the "Completed" button at the bottom of the page.

Did you complete this step? Let us know!