Where Can Suicidal Teens Turn for Help?
Teen suicide help is critical to learn about as suicide is a major leading cause of death in teens and young adults. And while almost 5,000 youth died by suicide in 2011, we know that suicide is something that can be prevented. Teen suicide help is available and with it, we can stop teen suicide.
What is Teen Suicide Help?
Teen suicide help is any resource that can help a teen that is feeling suicidal. These resources may be individuals, helplines, books, websites, support groups or programs the teen can attend. Sometimes this help is specific to a problem such as addressing a specific mental illness like depression or an eating disorder (mental illnesses often occur in those who are suicidal) or sometimes help is more general, such as joining a support group. If a teen is severely suicidal, professional teen suicide help should always be sought as suicide is not an issue to be taken lightly.
Helplines for Suicidal Teens
Helplines can be very useful for suicidal teens as they offer help and connection to other resources within the safety of the teen's own surroundings. National helplines are typically available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and are staffed by people trained in dealing with those who are feeling suicidal. There is nothing you can tell a hotline operator that they will be shocked by or that they haven't heard before.
Additionally, this form of teen suicide help can often be accessed via text message or online chat which is more comfortable for some youths.
- The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
- Youth Helpline, Your Life Your Voice – 1-800-448-3000
- The Trevor Project – for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth: 1-866-488-7386
People You Can Turn to For Teen Suicide Help
While you might not realize it, there are many people in a teen's life that can offer teen suicide help. These people include:
- School councillors
- Adult family members
- Adult family friends
- Faith leaders
- Doctors, psychologists and other professionals
- People from local mental health groups
Not all adults will be as capable as others in getting help for a suicidal teen so remember: if you're suicidal and the person you tell doesn't help you, keep telling someone until you get the help you need. Help is out there and you deserve to get better.
Websites for Help for Suicidal Teens
Many websites are dedicated to teen suicide help and to promoting mental wellness among teens. Often these websites provide content written by other teens so that readers can better relate. Chat forums are also often available to communicate with other teens who may be experiencing similar suicidal feelings.
Websites for teen suicide help include:
- You Matter – a website that talks about the tough issues that teens may be facing and works to prevent suicide.
- The Trevor Project – an organization dedicated to preventing suicide in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth. They also provide a chat service and a hotline available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1-866-488-7386.
- Your Life Your Voice – run by the Boys Town National Hotline (available to all).
- Mindyourmind – a website dedicated to educating teens about mental health and promoting good mental health in teens.
- Suicide.org's section on teens and suicide – this section outlines facts about teens and suicide and links to many other articles that deal with some of the issues that a suicidal teen may be facing.
- Reachout.com – a website dealing with teen mental health. It has a blog, real teen stories, and many forums including one on suicide.
Last Updated: 21 October 2017
Reviewed by Harry Croft, MD