Suicidal Ideation, what can help?

Reaching out for support might feel scary – but it’s really important! No matter how you’re feeling, there is always hope.

Talking about it is key. Speak to a trusted friend or family member, or contact our Therapy Service on to talk to one of our therapeutic counsellors. They can offer one-off drop-in appointments or weekly counselling sessions.

Many people will have thoughts of suicide – but thinking about suicide does not make it inevitable that you are going to take your own life. There are things you can do to manage your thoughts and feelings, and keep you safe:


Create a safety plan. It includes what you would do, and who might support you, in a crisis. It can help to manage those fleeting thoughts of suicide that emerge at the edge of your mind – through to situations where the desire to die becomes so overwhelming we no longer think we can keep ourselves safe. The plan is about finding hope when all feels lost, even if it’s just a glimmer

Remember your reasons for living:

  • It is important to remember that as well as having reasons for dying there are also reasons for living.
      • Have those in your plan as a reminder of your reasons to stay alive

Make your situation safer:

  • Do you have a plan of how you would take your own life? Do you know what you would use? Consider making it harder for yourself to get hold of them, especially when you are feeling in a crisis. Can you remove them from your house or give them to a family member?

Know your warning signs:

  • Are you triggered by certain events, anniversaries or times of the year? It might be about what is happening in your relationships
  • Does your behaviour change, or do you have particular feelings or thoughts before you start thinking about suicide?
  • Could other people close to you recognise these signs and help you to become aware of them?

Lift your mood:

  • The first stage of managing those emerging thoughts of suicide is knowing how to lift our mood or distract ourselves. Think about what works for you, and remember different things might help at different times:
        • Physical – go out for a run or walk or go to the gym
        • Creative – draw, colour, make music, bake
        • Productive – make lists, have a clear out, garden, write yourself a letter
        • Chill out – mediate, have a bath, listen to music, spend time with a pet, game, watch your favourite film or TV programme (on repeat if necessary)
        • People and places – can you go out and catch up with a friend, play sports, go somewhere you enjoy, go to a faith centre?

Press the pause button:


Though you may feel overwhelmed – it’s important to remember these feelings will pass.

If you are experiencing a mental health emergency, call the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) crisis team immediately on 0800 516171 or 999. They are available 24/7 and will support you through your crisis.