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Posted: November 16th, 2022

Ideation Emerges Across the Lifespan

Ideation Emerges Across the Lifespan
Examine how suicide ideation manifests itself across the lifespan in the absence of a current psychiatric mental health diagnosis:
Suicidal ideation is when a person considers or wishes to kill himself or herself. Passive suicide ideation is when someone considers suicide but does not make a plan. Active suicide ideation is when someone has made a plan to commit suicide. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Caucasian Americans are the most vulnerable, particularly middle-aged to older men who are typically single or divorced (CDC,2022). A gun to the head or mouth is preferred by Caucasian men. Non-Hispanic Native American Indian/Alaskans are the next most vulnerable, with alcoholism as the root cause (CDC, 2022). Statistics show that women attempt suicide three to five times more frequently than men. However, men’s lethal attempts kill more people.
Determine the risk factors for suicide in various age groups. Socioeconomic status, psychosocial factors, developmental stage, and other considerations
Suicidal ideation can be influenced by a variety of factors (SI). SI can affect children, teenagers, the elderly, the young, the rich, the poor, celebrities, and ordinary people. Race and ethnicity are not exempt. Suicidal ideation occurs when you feel hopeless and out of control in your life, and/or that it has no meaning or purpose. Certain factors make someone more vulnerable. However, no one is immune!
According to Shea (2017), the art of any interview for mental health providers is to identify the potential or at-risk for SI.
Risk Factors for Suicide:
Suicidal ideation and suicide are associated with a number of risk factors, including
Having previously attempted suicide
Having a mental health condition
Are you feeling hopeless, isolated, or lonely?
Being unmarried
Being lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender
Having previously served in the military
Being diagnosed with a chronic physical illness such as cancer, diabetes, or a terminal disease
Experiencing chronic pain
Having suffered a traumatic brain injury
Suicide has a family history
Having a drug or alcohol addiction
Having been abused or traumatized as a child
Living in the country
Possession of firearms
Compare and contrast various evidence-based assessment tools for prevention in each age group.
When assessing a young child or adolescent, a mental health provider must consider the home environment as well as interactions with parents, teachers, siblings, and personalities at school with whom she or he will interact. The brief suicide safety assessment (BSSA) assists pediatric providers in determining whether it is safe to discharge the patient home or whether immediate intervention is required. It is distinct from the screening tool. It simply determines risk and the next step in a child or at-risk youth.
In comparison to young adults (18-30), the mental health provider is looking for more social and interpersonal relationships that could trigger or leave unresolved mental health issues like depression or undiagnosed bipolar.
Suicide ideation in older adults (65 and older) stems from a variety of concerns about life changes, such as being psychically unable to do things they once could, and losing family members. The main reason, according to Conejero et al. (2018), is being a widow. As mental health providers, we must be aware of recent losses as well as those that occurred several years ago. That older adult is now slowing down or retiring. She or he has the opportunity to grieve, which can lead to hopelessness, depression, and SI.
Suicidal ideation scale examples include:
Suicide Screening Questions (ASQ): A set of four questions for children and adults designed to detect early signs of suicide; administration takes only 20 seconds. This is more of a preventative measure. Practitioners must conduct additional research into the threat’s likelihood and SI’s intentions.
Beck Suicide Ideation Scale (BSS): A set of 19 questions for adults that takes five to 10 minutes to administer. According to (Esfahani et. Al.,2019), a study was done in Tehran on the effectiveness of the BSS and the study had unique finding that participants scored lower on the probability of SI and ,it’s effectiveness. It was concluded that BSS is highly used and highly effective in the United States and other English speaking countries. It’ was more cultural based on what country it used and based on certain populations within the country. ( Esfahani et. Al., 2019)
Columbia Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS): A short questionnaire that is designed so that you don’t need formal mental healthcare training to administer it. It’s a tool that rates five areas: affective, cognitive, behavioral, contextual and interpersonal/social.
Suicide Probability Scale (SPS): Measures well-being and coping behavior using a four-point scale; takes five to 10 minutes to complete. According to Tatman et. al (2018) ,extensive studies have been performed on the effectiveness and reliability of this scale. They have just recently updated their finding that this tool is effective and more reliable than in previous years
References: Aguinaldo, L. D., Sullivant, S., Lanzillo, E. C., Ross, A., He, J.-P., Bradley-Ewing, A., Bridge, J. A., Horrowitz, L. M., & Wharff, E. A. (2021). Validation of the Ask Suicide-Screening Questions (ASQ) with Youth in Outpatient Specialty and Primary Care Clinics. General Hospital Psychiatry. Retrieved November 03, 2022, from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022). Suicide Data and Statistics. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved November 03, 2022, from
Conejero, I., Olié, E., Courtet, P., & Calati, R. (2018). Suicide in older adults: current perspectives. Clinical interventions in aging, 13, 691–699.
Esfahani, M., Hashemi, Y., & Alavi, K. (2019). Psychometric assessment of beck scale for suicidal ideation (BSSI) in general population in Tehran. Medical journal of the Islamic Republic of Iran, 29, 268.
Shea, S. C. (2017). Psychiatric Interviewing: The Art of Understanding (3rd ed.) Elsevier
Tatman, S. M., Greene, A. L., & Karr, L. C. (2018). Use of the Suicide Probability Scale (SPS) with adolescents. Suicide & life-threatening behavior, 23(3), 188–203. I

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