Long-Term Care

Trainer’s tip: Suicide prevention techniques

LTC Nursing Assistant Trainer, July 14, 2011

Here are some things you can do to help prevent someone from taking his or her own life:

  • Recognize anxiety and depression in others and help them get appropriate treatment.
  • Remove any weapons and be sure the environment is safe and secure.
  • If you suspect someone is thinking about suicide, ask them if they are. Do not be afraid that you’ll be giving them ideas. If they tell you they are having these thoughts, report it.
  • Be sure a depressed or anxious person is seeing the doctor as ordered and getting their medications.
  • Reassure a suicidal person of how much you care. Explain that depression is no one’s fault, that it can be treated, and that suicidal thoughts are temporary and will go away.
  • Don’t try to minimize the individual’s problems. Don’t tell the person how hurt his or her family will be or that he or she has everything to live for, because this just makes the person feel guilty and even more hopeless.
  • If you suspect someone is thinking about suicide, always report your suspicions to the appropriate person. Don’t think that you are imagining things or getting worried for nothing. It is much better to be cautious in this situation.

This is an excerpt from the HCPro book, The CNA Training Solution, Second Edition.

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