People of all genders, ages, and ethnicities can be at risk. Suicidal behavior is complex, and there is no single cause. The main risk factors for suicide are
Depression, other mental disorders, or substance use disorder
A history of suicide attempts
Family history of a mental disorder or substance use
Family history of suicide
Exposure to family violence, including physical or sexual abuse
Presence of guns or other firearms in the home
Having recently been release from prison or jail
Exposure, either directly or indirectly, to others' suicidal behavior, such as that of family members, peers, or celebrities
Most people who have risk factors will not attempt suicide and it is difficult to tell who will act on suicidal thoughts. Although risk factors for suicide are important to keep in mind, someone who is showing warning signs of suicide may be at higher risk for danger and need immediate attention.
Stressful life events (such as the loss of a loved one, legal troubles, or financial difficulties) and interpersonal stressors (such as shame, harassment, bullying, discrimination, or relationship troubles) may contribute to suicidal risk, especially when they occur along with suicide risk factors.
Family and friends are often the first to recognize the warning signs of suicide, and they can take the first step toward helping a loved one find mental health treatment. See the resources on NIMH's Find Help for Mental Illnesses page if you are not sure where to start. Or you can contact Siouxland Mental Health at 712-252-3871 to talk one of our Psychiatric Providers or one of our Therapist.
“Risk Factors,” Suicide Prevention, accessed September 8, 2021 https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/suicide-prevention#part_2474.