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A 46-year-old member asked:

if i tell a doctor i have thoughts of suicide, will they force me to go to a psych hospital?

3 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Robert Woods
Psychiatry 30 years experience
Not Always: Most individuals who experience a serious psychiatric condition will experience sucidal thoughts. The absolute best deterrent to suicide is to discuss it openly with someone who understands. We have a duty to protect our patients who's judgment might be impaired and only if we thought you might actually act upon your suicidal thoughts would we encourage or in some cases force hospitalization.
Dr. Byron Law-Yone
Psychiatry 55 years experience
Depends: A suicide risk assessment will help determine the level of care needed to treat you safely. Past or recent suicide attempts, positive family history, active drug abuse, major depression, impulsivity, irritability , having a plan, access to fire arms will be red flags that will infuence your dr's decision making process. Yes, he/she can have you involuntarily "commited" to a hospital.
Dr. David Murdock
Psychiatry 28 years experience
Not necessarily: It all depends on your history (prior attempts), the severity of your depression, and whether or not you have a plan and/or the means to carry out these thoughts. Other factors, such as hallucinations, substance abuse, and family history would be considered. This is a very difficult call, and simply reporting suicidal thoughts does not always require hospitalization.

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Similar questions

CA
A 24-year-old member asked:

Do I have the legal right to refuse treatment after a suicide attempt?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Kevin Considine
Family Medicine 30 years experience
No: You cannot refuse treatment if you are deemed a danger to yourself and you have been put on an involutary hold by a physician until you are cleared by a psychologist or psychiatrist.
A 42-year-old member asked:

If I call a suicide hotline, will they call 911 if they think i'm about to hurt myself?

3 doctor answers10 doctors weighed in
Dr. Donald Hazlett
Psychiatry 54 years experience
Yes: I can't think of any exceptions to that.
CA
A 38-year-old member asked:

How can you tell the difference between a suicide attempt and a gesture?

2 doctor answers10 doctors weighed in
Dr. Carla Enriquez
Pediatrics 50 years experience
Takes a professional: An attempt means that someone tried to actually kill themself. A gesture is posturing about the action. We are very concerned if someone has a plan for suicide, has left a note, and is expected to try. Gestures are more commonly associated with manipulation of people to gain credence or attention.
CA
A 34-year-old member asked:

Is cutting a sign of a true suicide attempt or just a gesture?

3 doctor answers10 doctors weighed in
Dr. Glen Elliott
Child Psychiatry 43 years experience
Depends: Although the majority of self-cutting is not intended to be fatal, I have had patients to deliberately try to open an artery with the intent of dying. One concern with wrist-cutting is that teens may not be aware how many tendons are just under the skin that can be severed if they cut cross-wise. Usually, though, wrist cutting is quite superficial and, as dr. Brown indicated, a cry for help.
A 37-year-old member asked:

As a christian, if i'm diagnosed with cancer and choose not to seek treatment is that suicide?

6 doctor answers24 doctors weighed in
Dr. Barry Rosen
General Surgery 34 years experience
Ask clergy.: As a physician, i feel very strongly that this goes beyond our areas of expertise. The best that we can offer is information regarding risks vs. Benefits and probability of cure. It is a patient's fundamental right to have final say-so regarding accepting treatment.
Dr. Patrick Melder
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 27 years experience
As a Christian who happens to be a surgeon and I having had to inform patients that they have cancer: doing nothing is always an option (regardless of your faith). No matter your faith, if you have a diagnosis of cancer, a large support network is how you enter decisions like this. And yes, seeking the support and opinion of your pastor is crucial.
Nov 24, 2011
Dr. Donald Hazlett
Psychiatry 54 years experience
We all have choices in life, not the least of which is life itself. Unfortunately the choice to live or die, the ultimate choice, is given little attention on a day to day basis and is often beyond our choosing. If it's a true choice face it with deep consideration. It is not only your right but it is your responsibility. Family can help and your physician can help to make the right decision.
Dec 24, 2011
Dr. Robert Kwok
Dr. Robert Kwok commented
Pediatrics 33 years experience
Agreed, and it is not suicide to decline treatment for a disease, regardless of one's religion.
Jun 19, 2019

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Last updated Dec 10, 2020
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