Passive and Active Suicidal Ideation

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When someone deals with suicidal feelings, they need to get immediate help. Some people have passive suicidal feelings while others experience active ones. Either case means the individual is struggling emotionally and needs to talk to a professional. Whether the person has passive suicidal ideation vs active, attending therapy sessions can help them understand what’s going on. Someone with either passive suicidal ideation or active ideation can contact Montare Behavioral Health of Tucson. We can provide treatment that brings a person back from the brink. We help people ease their symptoms and enjoy improved mental health through our residential program. 

What is Passive Suicidal Ideation? 

Passive suicidal ideation includes thoughts that happen to someone who has lost their enthusiasm for living. Their life has become overrun by painful emotions and symptoms of poor mental health. However, they don’t have an active plan for killing themselves in place. Instead, they live with a constant feeling of wishing they weren’t still around. The idea of the world just ending doesn’t frighten them because they hold little to no hope for rediscovering the motivation to live and how to feel joy.  

Passive Suicidal Thoughts 

Examples of passive suicidal thoughts:

  • I wish I could go to sleep and never wake up.
  • If I got really sick, I wouldn’t care if I ever got better.
  • I would do anything for the pain of living to end.
  • If I can’t find a way out of how bad I feel, I may have to start making plans to end things at some point.

What is Active Suicidal Ideation? 

Active suicidal ideation involves having an active plan for ending a person’s life. The individual has moved from feeling like they wish they were dead to formatting a plan. At this stage, the person needs immediate psychological intervention. They need to go to an emergency room and possibly check into a psychiatric ward for a few days until they can be stabilized. 

Active Suicidal Thoughts 

Examples of active suicidal thoughts:

  • I need to decide how I want to die.
  • I should write a goodbye note.
  • I am going to designate who my possessions should go to after I die.
  • I have a plan in place.

What are the Key Differences Between Passive vs Active Suicidal Ideation? 

There are differences between passive suicidal ideation vs active ideation. Passive thoughts are about how much in the depths of hopelessness and depression a person has become, and they think about how much easier it would be not to continue living. However, they have not yet reached the point of making a concrete plan to commit suicide. Someone with active suicide ideation has decided they are ready to end their life. They have a plan in place and are working towards putting it into action.

Despite the differences, anyone who struggles with suicidal feelings should be taken seriously. Someone who has passive thoughts can easily transition to having active thoughts and a plan. When anyone talks about feeling suicidal, they are in need of immediate help. Suicide deaths in the U.S. increased in 2022 from the previous year, with an estimated 49,449 people dying by their own hands. 

How Are Passive and Active Suicidal Ideation Treated? 

Man getting help for suicidal ideation at Montare Behavioral Health programs in Tucson Arizona Passive and active suicidal thoughts are serious and require appropriate treatment and intervention. 

Treatment for Passive Suicidal Thoughts

  1. Therapy: Psychotherapy, especially Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), can be highly effective. CBT helps individuals identify negative thought patterns, challenge them, and develop healthier coping strategies.
  2. Support Groups: Being part of a support group where individuals share their experiences can provide a sense of connection and understanding.
  3. Medication: In some cases, medication might need to be prescribed to manage underlying mental health conditions like depression or anxiety that contribute to passive suicidal thoughts.

Treatment for Active Suicidal Thoughts

Active suicidal thoughts require immediate intervention due to the higher risk involved. If you or someone you know is experiencing active suicidal thoughts, consider the following steps:

  1. Emergency Services: If the risk is imminent, contact emergency services or go to the nearest emergency center.
  2. Mental Health Professional: Contact a mental health professional immediately. This could be a therapist, psychiatrist, or counselor.
  3. Crisis Hotlines: Contact a crisis hotline such as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) in the United States. They offer support, resources, and a listening ear.
  4. Support System: Inform friends, family members, or loved ones about what you’re experiencing. They can provide emotional support and help you seek professional help.
  5. Safety Plan: Contact a mental health professional to develop a safety plan. This plan outlines steps to take when experiencing distressing thoughts and includes emergency contacts.
  6. Inpatient Care: In severe cases, hospitalization might be necessary to ensure safety and provide intensive treatment.

Remember, it’s important to reach out for help as soon as possible. Suicidal thoughts can be temporary, and with appropriate treatment and support, individuals can recover and regain hope for the future. If you’re concerned about yourself or someone else, don’t hesitate to seek help.

Therapy for Suicidal Thoughts

Treatment for active and passive suicidal ideation revolves around getting to the bottom of what’s causing these symptoms. Someone with suicidal feelings typically deals with depression, but may also struggle with other mental health disorders. This includes PTSD, bipolar disorder, anxiety, mood disorders, and schizophrenia. The kinds of therapy that help people dealing with suicidal feelings include:

Contact Montare Behavioral Health of Tucson, Arizona About Our Treatment Options

Do you find yourself struggling with finding the inspiration to keep trying to get through your days because of poor mental health? When anyone contemplates ending their lives as an option, they deserve to get help immediately. Both active and passive suicidal ideation are signs that someone needs a professional setting where they can talk about what’s going on. Montare Behavioral Health of Tucson provides residential care that gives you a safe setting to begin to heal. Whether you have experienced passive suicidal ideation vs active, the multi-disciplinary treatment we provide can help you rediscover the joy of living. 

If you want to get the compassionate, discreet help you deserve, contact us now. We are happy to answer your questions and design a plan that helps you improve your mental health.