BDD – SUGGESTED GUIDELINES FOR FAMILY MEMBERS AND FRIENDS: IF THE PERSON WITH BDD IS CONSIDERING SUICIDE, GET IMMEDIATE PSYCHIATRIC CARE

Nothing is more likely to precipitate a family crisis than suicidal thinking or behavior, which isn’t uncommon. When this occurs, you may be able to help.
The most important thing you can do is to get psychiatric treatment. Contact the treating psychiatrist or therapist, a local psychiatric hospital, a community mental health center, or a hospital emergency room. You shouldn’t deal with suicidal thinking or behavior on your own. Suicidal thinking and behavior are serious warning signs that the person is suffering greatly; furthermore, they may culminate in actual suicide.
A common response is to deny or minimize suicidal thinking in a loved one. It’s a very difficult situation to face, and you may be tempted to ignore it in the hope that it will simply go away. But it’s a serious mistake to ignore these warning signs or assume they will pass. They may not, and they may worsen if untreated. If a person with BDD appears severely depressed, it’s/advisable for you to ask if they’ve had thoughts that life isn’t worth living, thoughts of harming themselves, or a plan to end their life. Asking such questions won’t put the thought of suicide in their head and may even be life saving.
Usually, suicidal thinking is associated with an underlying psychiatric disorder, such as BDD or depression, which is amenable to psychiatric treatment. Insist that your loved one obtain psychiatric treatment, including medication, which often effectively treats BDD symptoms as well as associated depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts.
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