In the event you suspect the safety of someone is at risk, it is important that you get the help of experts immediately. County crisis services are available through the 24-hour Maricopa Crisis Line at 602-222-9444 (for mobile crisis team assistance, in-home intervention and urgent care). EMPACT is also available at 480-784-1500 for telephone counseling, and for accessing crisis services through the Maricopa Crisis Line.
Text/call 1-844-MIND247 (844-646-3247)
Crisis Text Line
Text "START" or "HELLO" to 741741
EMPACT/La Frontera Arizona
The Warm Line
Salt River Pima-Maricopa
Indian Community (SRPMIC) Support
SRPMIC Important Phone Numbers
Right of Way (Trauma Therapy)
What Are the Warning Signs?
The warning signs of teen suicide are often reflected in different ways across the dimensions of a teen’s feelings and behavior. The Society for Prevention of Teen Suicide uses the Acronym “FACTS” as a guide for keeping possible warning signs in mind: F (Feelings), A (Actions), C (Changes in Patterns), T (Threats) and S (Situations).
Feelings–Untreated depression is considered the single most significant risk factor for completed suicide in adolescents. A teen may express depression in feelings of sadness, lethargy, hopelessness, loneliness, guilt, shame, anxiety or worry. Often there is an expression of self-deprecation that will never change – “I’ll always be a loser.”
Actions–The behavior of teens is important to consider because depression in teens is often masked by use of drugs and alcohol, which become very dangerous. Depression in teens is also masked by irritability, cutting, school problems and “acting out” behavior. This can show as risk taking behavior, promiscuity, and defiance of curfews or parental requests. Too often the teen’s provocative behavior results in cycles of fighting and animosity that create distance between parent and teen. – “Just leave me alone – Get off my back!”
Changes—At times, no one knows their teen like the parent. Changes in personality and day-to-day patterns of sleeping, eating, involvement with friends, interest in activities, and sudden elation after being depressed are signs that warrant attention.
When one mother heard that her college freshman son had quit the soccer team and was unhappy with his roommates — she got into her car and drove 4 hours to see him.
Sometimes it is a teen who realizes their friend is acting different in a way that worries or frightens them.
When one teenage girl became worried about her friend, it was her Dad who picked up the worry and asked if he could help – they both did.
Threats—Any verbalized or veiled threat like, “Who cares if I’m dead or alive, anyway?” said directly, posted on face book, sent as emails or sudden interest in death and dying in the news, removal of prescription medication from its usual spot etc., cannot be ignored.
Situations of Risk– there are certain situations that may jeopardize a teen’s coping capacity and increase the chances of feeling there is no solution–no way to stop the pain.These can include:
- Prior Suicide Attempt
- Bullying and Cyberbullying
- Gay, Lesbian, Transgendered Youth (victimization and bullying, fear of family reactions, shame, or guilt with lack of support)
- Exposure to the Suicide of a Close Friend or School Peer
- Family History of Suicide
- Death of a Parent or Sibling