Sunday, 25 March 2012

Psychiatric Emergencies - Suicide

Psychiatric emergencies include various mental conditions that trigger suddenly and are harmful for the individual suffering, as well as people surrounding him. Psychiatric emergencies usually include violent behavior, aggression, and suicidal attempts. Suicide and homicide attempts are prime psychiatric conditions that seek immediate medical attention from an experienced psychiatrist. Continual rise in the psychiatric problems challenges the psychiatric services. Suicidal behavior calls for a social help. Although, suicide is a sudden act of a person suffering from mental disorder, it may be a result of suicidal thoughts that keep accumulating in the patient's mind over a period of time.
Suicidal attempts are the most common life-threatening psychiatric emergencies. The instances of suicidal attempts have increased by 47% since the last decade. A person should be immediately offered psychiatric emergency services by a mental health professional. Diagnostic clarity is a must for an effective treatment of psychiatric problems. An effective treatment may be dependent upon the underlying cause of behavioral disorder.
Causes of Suicidal Thoughts
There are various reasons that are responsible for a person committing suicide or attempting a suicide. However, some common reasons are given below. People varyingly respond to a certain incident according to their beliefs and ambitions.
  • Usual reason for people attempting suicide is failure in relations, be it family problems or failure in love.
  • Some people are ambitious or may be over ambitious and have high aspirations about their studies, grades, and jobs. In case, their ambitions about these elements do not fulfill, they may be shattered and attempt suicide.
  • Unlike the above reasons, which are common in adolescent and younger generation, another cause for committing suicide may be medical conditions. Such reasons are common in elderly people. People unable to cope with chronic diseases are also likely to commit suicide.
Symptoms of Suicidal Thoughts
Suicide attempt is sudden and is a result of temptation to end one's life.. If suicide thought and attempt is associated with a sudden shock, it cannot show any symptoms. However, not always a person commits suicide immediately as a reaction to shock;his suicide attempt can be a result of depression or medical illness. A person suffering from depression can be identified by his low energy, lack of interest, and he may choose to remain isolated from the society.
Diagnosis of suicide thoughts can be based on observation of the behavioral disorders of a person. Studies show that if a person has tried a suicide attempt, which failed, he may try it again in a year's time or within 2 years. Behavioral disorders such as aggression, violence, and isolation is common in people with suicidal tendency.
Treatment of suicide thoughts is to find out the cause for the suicidal attempts and then counseling the person, so that he can overcome the depression. To help him in overcoming depression, pharmacological treatment with antidepressants is also useful. Suicide treatment should begin immediately after observing behavioral changes in a person or after an unsuccessful suicide attempt.

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