Suicide & Mental Illness


  • Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death for ages 10-24.
  • Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death for college age youth 12-18.
  • More teenagers die from suicide than cancer, heart disease, AIDS, birth defects, stroke, influenza, pneumonia, and lung disease COMBINED.
  • Each day in our nation there is an average of  over 5,240  attempts by young people grades 7-12.
  • Four out of Five teens who attempt suicide have given clear warning signs. 

Statistics provided by CDC.Gov


Recognizing signs of a depressive episode or depression; shows symptoms for 2 weeks or more:

  • Loss of interest in most activities
  • Significant unintentional change in weight or appetite
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Decreased energy, chronic fatigue or tiredness, feeling exhausted
  • Feelings of excessive guilt
  • Feelings of low self-esteem, low self-confidence, or worthlessness
  • Feelings of despair or hopelessness (pervasive pessimism about the future)
  • Avoidance of normal familial and social contacts
  • Frequent agitation, restlessness
  • Psychologically or emotionally detached
  • Feelings of irritability or frustration
  • Decrease in activity, effectiveness, or productivity
  • Difficulty in thinking (poor concentration, poor memory, or indecisiveness)
  • Excessive or inappropriate worries
  • Being easily moved to tears
  • Anticipation of the worst
  • Thoughts of suicide
Center for Substance Abuse Treatment. Managing Depressive Symptoms in Substance Abuse Clients During Early Recovery. Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series 48. DHHS Publication No. (SMA) 08-4353. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2008.

Recognizing Signs of Suicidal Behavior:

  • Withdrawn
  • Moody
  • Talks about self in past-tense
  • Loss of interest in things that were once enjoyable
  • Makes Preparations: getting personal business in order
  • Change of appetite
  • Change in sleeping habits
  • Hopelessness
  • Dangerous or self-harming behavior