Tips for Suicide Prevention and Intervention



Note: This website does not provide emergency services. In an emergency, dial 911 or your local emergency number immediately. 


We are in the midst of a youth mental health crisis in the United States.  Our mental health is an essential part of our overall health. Talking about it is critical to getting help for yourself or someone you know. But how do we create the space to have these conversations? Start by knowing the signs. According to Know the Signs, a statewide suicide prevention awareness campaign, here are some signs in teens to look out for:  

  • Withdrawal 
  • Changes in sleep 
  • Reckless behavior 
  • Changes in personality 

Next, we must find the words to say something and the courage to reach out for help. Asking for help is not a sign of weakness, but rather a sign of strength. 

To support you with these critical conversations, we have compiled a list of resources including talking points and training opportunities.  



The Los Angeles County Youth Suicide Prevention Project provides outreach and support to districts, schools, parents, and high-risk youth. 


Talking About It 

(Source: Los Angeles County Youth Suicide Prevention Project

If you believe your child is experiencing thoughts of suicide, it is important to address the issue directly:  

  • Ask your child, “Are you thinking about hurting yourself?” 
  • Be empathic towards your child with his or her answer. Let them know you are there for them. 
  • Provide support to your child considering suicide by taking them to the emergency room for an evaluation. 
  • Provide ongoing support through mental health counseling either through the school or in the community so your child can receive help with their suicidal thoughts. 
  • Get support for yourself by seeking counseling or parent support groups. 
  • Familiarize yourself with the warning signs and protective factors around suicide. 
  • Be aware of community resources that specialize in assisting youth with thoughts of suicide. 


Safe and effective suicide prevention messages… 

(Source: Alberta Health Services

  1. Promote help-seeking  

Identify the desired help-seeking behavior such as calling a hotline, visiting a health provider or downloading a mental health app. 

  1. Address stigma  

Use personal stories of resilience and recovery – examples of people who sought help and benefited. Emphasize hope when talking about someone who experienced a suicidal crisis. 

  1. Raise awareness  

Identify common warning signs (talking about wanting to die, mood changes, feeling hopeless, helpless or worthless), risk factors (a previous attempt, mental illness, history of trauma or abuse, isolation), and protective factors (strong connections to family and community support, a sense of belonging, strong coping skills). 


Suggesting that suicide is inevitable or common and that it can’t be prevented. 

Emphasizing that suicide is preventable, and help is available. 

Include resources about how to get help, including hotlines and local organizations that provide suicide intervention. 



The Los Angeles County Office of Education has expanded the Employee Assistance Service for Education (EASE) program to school employees in all 80 Los Angeles County public K-12 school districts. EASE is a benefit that offers the support and resources you may need to address any personal challenges or concerns that may affect your personal and professional well-being. EASE benefits are available to all management, certificated, and classified employees. This video shares an overview of EASE services for school employees or you can read this brochure to learn more.

EASE services include: 

  • 24/7 EASE Hotline available
    • You have immediate access to speak with a counselor when needed.
  • Counseling services (tele-health and face-to-face) counseling available with professional counselors for issues such as stress, grief and loss, anxiety, emotional issues, relationship problems (family/couple/marital), job stress, work relationships, substance use, covid-19 pandemic related, and more.
    • Up to 5 sessions per employee
    • Individual counseling available
    • Conjoint counseling available (marital/couples/family)
    • Services available through tele-health, or through direct face to face (direct is based on availability)
    • Unlimited telephonic counseling access through the EASE 24/7 hotline
  • Work/life telephonic support for work and life issues with resources to information such as child care, financial, legal, identity theft, and more.


The Los Angeles County Youth Suicide Prevention Project is a partnership between the Los Angeles County Office of Education and the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health that provides Suicide Prevention Ongoing Resiliency Training (SPORT), outreach and support to districts, schools, parents, and high-risk youth. 



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