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Military suicide prevention and veteran suicide prevention are a top priority of leaders at the Defense Department and the Department of Veterans Affairs.
The veterans crisis hotline is a tool for both current and former military members who need immediate mental health help. If you or someone you know is thinking about suicide, please call the veterans crisis hotline at 800-273-8255, option 1. You can also call the national suicide prevention line at 800-273-8255.
Mental health help is also available by text message at 838255 or through an online chat. All suicide prevention help is available 24/7.
Active-duty suicides reached a record high in 2018 of 325. In 2016, the last date for which data is available, the suicide rate among veterans was about 30.5 per 100,000 or about 20 veterans per day.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, the warning signs of suicide can include:
If you're worried a friend or family member might be suicidal, start a conversation to let them know you're concerned. Try to keep these VA-suggested best practices in mind during your conversation:
Follow these three steps to offer immediate, practical help to a loved one who may be considering suicide.
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If you are experiencing thoughts of suicide, know that free and immediate help is available.
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The best way to prevent suicide is to recognize troubling signs.