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Jump in Youth Suicide Prompts National Children's Charity KidsPeace to Issue Tips on Prevention, Warning Signs

or clues that a child is contemplating or planning to attempt suicide," says Dr. Herbert Mandell of the KidsPeace Children's Hospital in Orefield, Pennsylvania. The most important signals to look out for are:

* Prior history of attempted suicide or suicide by someone close to the


* Writings about suicide (poems, stories, etc.)

* Indirect threats ("I wish I was dead.") or direct threats ("I'm going

to kill myself.")

* Preoccupation with death including:

-- Talking about death or compulsively thinking about and longing

for a dead person

-- Sudden, intense interest in religion and afterlife

-- Making final arrangements (writing a will, talking about their

funeral, etc.)

-- Giving away prized possessions

-- Creating artwork or writing or listening to music about


-- Visible changes in behavior, physical condition, thoughts, or

feelings such as withdrawal, isolation, or loss of interest in

social interaction

* Diminished involvement in usual interests, activities, or hobbies

* Increased risk-taking behaviors, recklessness, or aggressiveness

* Decreased academic performance

* Increased use of alcohol or drugs

* Crying easily

* Abrupt changes in appearance

* Recent weight or appetite change

* Change in sleep patterns

* Exhaustion, extreme drowsiness

* Inability to concentrate or think rationally

* Exaggerated fears, extreme anxiety, or depression

* Low self-esteem

* Hopelessness or helplessness

* Increased irritability or anger, mood swings or withdrawal from


* Stress from difficult situations including the inability to cope with

loss (such as divorce, breaking with a boy/girlfriend, loss of a job

or status, deat

SOURCE KidsPeace
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
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