About suicide prevention
Suicide is a tragedy. It deeply affects friends, families and communities. But with the right support, it is preventable. Find out what we’re doing to prevent suicide and support Australians affected by suicide.
Get help now
In an emergency, call 000.
Help is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, anywhere in Australia. If you need help now, call:
- Lifeline – 13 11 14
- Kids Helpline – 1800 55 1800
- Mental Health Crisis Assessment and Treatment Team in your state/territory
- Beyond Blue – 1300 224 636.
Find a list of services that can help you right now at Head to Health.
What suicide is
Suicide is the act of intentionally ending your own life. It is a tragedy, which has devastating impacts on families, friends and communities. Suicide is often the result of mental ill-health, such as depression. But the reasons people think about suicide are complex and varied, and include:
- job loss
- financial struggle
- physical health conditions
- relationship breakdowns
We can prevent suicides. With the right skills, knowledge and support, we can keep people safe.
Why preventing suicide matters
The loss of any life is tragic, and has a deep impact on family and friends. But a loss through suicide can be especially complex and traumatic, and the devastating impact on those left behind is immeasurable.
By recognising the warning signs, and knowing how to talk about it and what to do to help, we can save a life.
Lifestyle and suicide prevention
- reducing drug and alcohol use
- reducing cigarette smoking
- eating a healthy diet
- exercising regularly
- getting adequate sleep.
Warning signs of suicide
Suicidal thoughts can happen to anyone at any point in their life.
People who are thinking about suicide almost always show warning signs. Some of these include:
- abusing alcohol or drugs
- withdrawing from family and friends
- talking about wanting to die, feeling empty, hopeless, or having no reason to live
- appearing anxious or agitated
- acting recklessly
- losing interest in their self-care and appearance.
How to get help for yourself
You might be feeling hopeless and isolated, and that there is no way out.
If you’re thinking about suicide, you’re not alone – many people feel this way. It’s important to let someone know how you are feeling and reach out for help. It can be someone close to you, or a specialised support service.
How to get help for someone else
The best way to prevent suicide is to recognise the warning signs, take them seriously and take immediate action to help.
If you think a person is at immediate risk, call their doctor, a mental health crisis service, or 000 – tell them the person’s life is at risk. You can also take them to a hospital emergency department.
Stay with them. Do not leave them alone, unless you are worried about your own safety.
Remove any possible means of suicide from their immediate environment, like medicines, knives or other sharp objects, and household chemicals, like bleach.
Find out more about what you can do if you are worried about someone.