Substance Abuse and Suicide Prevention

Substance Abuse and Suicide Prevention: Evidence & Implications – A White Paper (SAMHSA) - This white paper provides an overview of the advances made over the past decade in substance abuse prevention and treatment and suicide prevention. It addresses the epidemiology of suicide, provides an overview of what we know about the impact of substance abuse on suicide risk, and explores suicide prevention in the context of behavioral health promotion and illness prevention.
TIP 50: Addressing Suicidal Thoughts and Behaviors in Substance Abuse Treatment, 2009 - TIP 50 provides counselors with tools to use in treatment and agency administrators with ways to ensure that suicide ideation is detected and addressed early and appropriately. TIP 50 also provides insights on how various drugs used by clients might affect mood and addresses cultural and gender issues that could influence behavior.
Collaboration Continuum for Substance Abuse and Suicide Prevention - a Web-based resource designed to help suicide prevention programs build and strengthen connections with their substance abuse prevention and treatment counterparts. The Continuum contains a collection of practical tools and resources to help partners be effective and strategic in their work together. Partners also can use this worksheet to find out where you are on the Continuum and to identify strengths, areas of improvement, and steps for reinforcing your partnership. The website also provides materials on what the phases of collaboration looks like.
Suicide Prevention and the Clinical Workforce: Guidelines for Training of the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention – set of new training guidelines for better preparing health, human services, and behavioral health professionals to treat those at risk for suicide.
Illinois trainings
National webinar
  • Understanding the Connection Between Suicide and Substance Abuse: What the Research Tells Us - 2014 (SAMHSA Prevention Training and Technical Assistance) - The first in a two-part series, this webinar examined current research findings on the connections between substance abuse and suicide, highlighting in particular factors that contribute to both problems and can be addressed in a coordinated way.
  • Mobilizing Partnerships and Resources to Address Substance Abuse and Suicide – 2014 (SAMHSA Prevention Training and Technical Assistance) - The second in a two-part series, this webinar was designed to prepare practitioners to work across disciplines to address substance abuse and suicide. Participants explored the essential ingredients of effective collaboration, and learned about some of the innovative ways practitioners are working together to prevent these related problem.
  • Alcohol Use, Depression and Young People: Implications for Addressing Suicide Risk – 2010 (Suicide Prevention Resource Center) - An overview of what we know and don’t know about the impact of alcohol use on mental health and suicide and the implications for suicide prevention planning. This webinar is suitable for a wide range of alcohol and suicide prevention practitioners at the state and community level, tribes, and colleges and universities
Power point presentations
Suicide Prevention Resources
Warning signs - The following signs may mean someone is at risk for suicide. The risk of suicide is greater if a behavior is new or has increased and if it seems related to a painful event, loss, or change. If you or someone you know exhibits any of these signs, seek help as soon as possible by calling the Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
  • Talking about wanting to die or to kill oneself.
  • Looking for a way to kill oneself, such as searching online or buying a gun.
  • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live.
  • Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain.
  • Talking about being a burden to others.
  • Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs.
  • Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly.
  • Sleeping too little or too much.
  • Withdrawing or feeling isolated.
  • Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge.
  • Displaying extreme mood swings.
National and State Resources

For additional suicide prevention information, please contact the Suicide Prevention Program, Illinois Department of Public Health at 217-782-3300.


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