Behavioral Health BLANK Section Strength of Evidence Level: Blank

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1 Behavioral Health BLANK Section 22.01

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8 Behavioral Health Suicide Risk Factors SECTION: Strength of Evidence Level: 3 PURPOSE: Suicide is a serious public health problem with extensive short and long-term health consequences. Four categories of activities are identified as key to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention s (CDC s) work: 1. Monitoring and researching the problem 2. Supporting and enhancing prevention programs 3. Providing prevention resources 4. Encouraging research and development. For more information on CDC s suicide prevention programs, agencies can visit EQUIPMENT: None Risk Factors for Suicide 1. Previous suicide attempts. 2. Mental disorders such as schizophrenia, mood disorders such as depression, and bipolar disorder. 3. Co-occurring mental and alcohol and substance abuse disorders. 4. Family history of suicide. 5. Hopelessness. 6. Impulsive and/or aggressive tendencies. 7. Barriers to accessing mental health treatment. 8. Relational, social, work or financial loss. 9. Physical illness. 10. Easy access to lethal methods, especially guns. 11. Unwillingness to seek help because of stigma attached to mental and substance abuse disorders and/or suicidal thoughts. 12. Influence of significant people family members, celebrities, peers who have died by suicide both through direct personal contact or inappropriate media representations. 13. Cultural and religious beliefs such as the belief that suicide is a noble resolution of a personal dilemma. 14. Local epidemics of suicide that have a contagious influence. 15. Isolation, a feeling of being cut off from other people. Socio-cultural Risk Factors 1. Lack of social support and sense of isolation. 2. Stigma associated with help-seeking behavior. 3. Barriers to accessing health care, especially mental health and substance abuse treatment. 4. Certain cultural and religious beliefs (for instance, the belief that suicide is a noble resolution of a personal dilemma). 5. Exposure to others who have died by suicide, including influence of the media. Protective Factors for Suicide 1. Effective clinical care for mental, physical and substance use disorders. 2. Easy access to a variety of clinical interventions and support for help-seeking. 3. Restricted access to highly lethal means of suicide. 4. Strong connections to family and community support. 5. Support through ongoing medical and mental health care relationships. 6. Skills in problem solving, conflict resolution and nonviolent handling of disputes. 7. Cultural and religious beliefs that discourage suicide and support self preservation. 8. Suicide Prevention Resource Center: Biopsychosocial Risk Factors 1. Mental disorders: Particularly mood disorders, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders and certain personality disorders; alcohol and other substance use disorders. 2. Hopelessness. 3. Impulsive and/or aggressive tendencies. 4. History of trauma or abuse. 5. Some major physical illnesses. 6. Previous suicide attempt. 7. Family history of suicide. Environmental Risk Factors 1. Job or financial loss. 2. Relational or social loss. 3. Easy access to lethal means. 4. Local clusters of suicide that have a contagious influence.

9 Behavioral Health References SECTION: 22 REFERENCES National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, CDC. (2006). Preventing suicide: program activities guide. Retrieved from, Yesavage, J.A. (2006). Mood assessment scale for females and males. University of Stanford. Retrieved from, Yesavage, J.A., Brink, T.L., Rose, R.L., Lum, O. Huang, Adey, M., Leirer, V.O. (1983). Development and Validation of a Geriatric Depression Screening Scale: A Preliminary Report. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 17,