Suicide is the act of taking one’s own life.

“According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, suicide is one of the leading causes of death in the United States, taking the lives of approximately 43,000 Americans each year,” says

There are many factors that increase suicidal behavior.

Mental illnesses such as depression, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia are leading factors in suicidal behaviors. Family history of suicide, being incarcerated, being socially isolated or bullied, substance abuse, being abused or witnessing abuse, and previous suicide attempts are just a few risk factors that may contribute to suicide and suicidal behavior.

People over the age of 45, Caucasians, American Indians, Native Alaskans, and men have a higher risk for suicide.

Talk therapy, medications, and lifestyle changes are a few treatments for people who are at risk for suicide.

People can help prevent suicide by taking medications, paying attention to warning signs, never skipping appointments, and getting rid of lethal methods of suicide in the home such as knives, dangerous medications, and firearms.

If you live in the United States, call National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (800-273-8255).