suicide

Suicide is the act of intentionally ending your life.

There are three levels of intervention in suicide; 1) universal 2) selective and 3) indicated.

Universal interventions target everyone in a defined population. They aim to increase awareness about suicide, remove barriers to care, promote help-seeking and encourage protective factors. Some examples of universal interventions include school-based interventions and national initiatives such as restricted access to lethal means. Evidence suggests that universal interventions are effective at increasing awareness and helping skills, though there is little evidence to suggest they’re effective at reducing suicide-related thoughts or behaviours.

Selective interventions address specific groups at increased risk for suicidal behaviours, for instance those with mental health problems or harmful use of substances. To date, there have been few studies into selective interventions and results are mixed.

Indicated interventions target high-risk individuals already displaying signs of suicidal behaviour. Examples include brief contact interventions (e.g. crisis cards) and talking therapies. Evidence suggests that brief contact interventions are effective for young people in clinical settings. A network meta-analysis conducted in 2021 found that the most effective talking therapies for suicide and self-harm in young people are dialectical behavioural therapies and mentalisation-based therapies.

 

Our suicide Blogs

Alexithymia and suicide, violence, and dual harm in male prisoners

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Ross Nedoma reviews a recent cross-sectional study examining the links between alexithymia and suicide, violence or dual harm among male prisoners in the UK.

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Risk factors for suicide in men: new review highlights substance misuse, marital status and depression

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Holly Crudgington summarises a recent systematic review and narrative synthesis of risk factors for suicidal behaviour in men, which finds that substance misuse, marital status and depression are the strongest risk factors.

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The best terminology to describe self-harm: “There is more that unites us than divides us”

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Angharad de Cates reviews a recent study which examined international definitions of English-language terms for suicidal and self-harm behaviours.

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Acceptability of psychosocial and psychoeducational group intervention after repeat suicide attempts

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Sadhbh Byrne reviews a recent mixed-methods study on client acceptability of a psychosocial and psychoeducational group intervention for repeat suicide attempts. The ‘Psychosocial/psychoeducation Intervention for recurrent Suicide Attempts’ (PISA), or ‘Skills for Safer Living’ (SfSL).

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Should clinicians be developing a suicide safety plan with their patients?

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Felicity Pearce, Bani Kahai and Derek Tracy summarise a recent meta-analysis examining safety planning-type interventions for suicide prevention.

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Suicide rates in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic: cross-national data provide no evidence of an increase

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Karel Kieslich, Rosalind McAlpine and Alexandra Pitman review a recent study exploring suicide trends in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic with real-time data from 21 countries.

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#Instagram: Is it dangerous in terms of suicide and self-harm content?

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Jess Williams explores a recent systematic review which explores whether suicide and self-harm content on Instagram is dangerous or not.

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Are homeless people more likely to die by suicide?

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Ian Cummins explores a study that analysed data from the National Confidential Inquiry into Suicide and Safety in Mental Health, which finds that homeless people were more likely to die by suicide after discharge from hospital than non-homeless people.

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Healthcare contact prior to suicide: key opportunities for suicide prevention

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In her debut blog, Su-Gwan Tham explores a Welsh population-based data linkage study, which finds that almost 3 in 4 people (73%) who died by suicide in Wales had contact with services in the month before their death.

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Suicide risk in transgender and gender diverse people

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Talen Wright explores trends in suicide death risk among transgender people by drawing on findings from the Amsterdam Cohort of Gender Dysphoria Study.

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