Suicide, the act of taking one’s own life, is a terrible reaction to stressful life situations. What makes suicide so tragic is that it can be prevented. If you are considering suicide or know of someone that feels suicidal, reach out for immediate help and treatment because you might just save a life – your own or someone else’s.
At Pacific Grove Hospital, we recognize that while a person may not ask for help, it doesn’t mean that help isn’t wanted. Right now your emotional pain and suffering may have become so unbearable that you believe the only way to find relief is through suicide. We want you to know that suicide is not the answer; there are other ways of dealing with the pain you are facing. The staff at Pacific Grove can teach you new ways of dealing with your emotional difficulties and show you that life can, once again, be a beautiful thing.
Helping a Loved One or Family Member Get Treatment
Many individuals who are considering suicide will give a warning sign or signals of their intentions. The best thing you can do to prevent suicide is to learn to recognize the warning signs and know how to appropriately respond should you believe someone is indeed suicidal. Here are some warning signs to look out for:
- Talking about suicide
- Preoccupation with death
- No hope for the future
- Saying goodbye and getting affairs in order
- Dramatic mood swings or sudden personality changes
- Loss of interest in day-to-day activities
- Changes in eating and sleeping patterns
- Self-destructive behavior
- Sudden sense of calm
If you spot warning signs in a loved one, you may be faced with the difficult decision of deciding if you should say anything in case there is a chance you are wrong. However, anyone who talks about suicide or shows warning signs needs help immediately.
Talking to someone you suspect is suicidal is not going to make things worse. By showing that you care, giving that person the opportunity to discuss their feelings may actually prevent a suicide attempt. If a loved one tells you that they are contemplating death by suicide, it is important to evaluate the immediate danger and seek professional help. Finally, the best thing you can do for a suicidal loved one is to provide them with empathy and support. Let them know that they are not alone and that you deeply care about them. While your loved one has to make a personal commitment to recovery, you can join them in the process by offering your support.
Why Consider Treatment at Pacific Grove
Both suicidal ideation and previous suicide attempts take an emotional toll on an individual and their loved ones. Eventually, you may become so immersed in your suicidal thoughts that you are no longer able to function on a daily basis. Previous suicide attempts can leave permanent and sometimes debilitating injuries such as brain damage or organ failure. The sooner someone with suicidal ideation gets treatment, the better; not only may it prevent a suicide, but it can help the individual move past this dark time in their life.
For individuals who are struggling with thoughts of suicide, an inpatient treatment program can be one of the most effective forms of treatment available. Through this type of treatment program, people will be able to receive any medication they may need, treatment for the presence of any substance abuse problems, and the types of therapy needed to get to the root of what is causing these suicidal thoughts.
Program Philosophy and Benefits
At Pacific Grove Hospital, our clients will get an effective recovery process, not just a quick fix. We explain the entire treatment process, teaching clients what is happening each step of the way, in order to empower them to become active members of their recovery process. The primary focus across our programs is to treat the whole person, allowing us to ensure that we are treating more than just symptoms. We believe that through this approach, clients are better equipped to handle all aspects of their recovery and are in a great position to be successful in rebuilding their lives. Finally, we make sure to go through the entire treatment process with all family members, integrating loved ones into the recovery plan.
Types of Treatment Offered at Pacific Grove
Pacific Grove is a full service hospital and our staff is dedicated to making your stay a transformative experience that provides you with the knowledge, skills, and resources necessary to pursue a healthier, more fulfilling life. When you arrive, you will undergo a complete assessment with one of our expert clinicians to assess your current needs and determine which level of care will be most appropriate. The results of your assessment will be used to help your treatment team develop a plan of care for your stay.
Some of the treatment approaches we use to help suicidal individuals may include:
Medication management: Depending upon your circumstances, your treatment plan may include medication to manage symptoms of an underlying mental illness. Medications such as antidepressants or anti-anxiety medications can help reduce presenting symptoms, leading to a reduction in suicidal urges. All medication use is closely monitored and altered as necessary.
Individual therapy: Individual sessions can be used to help explore the reasons that may have led to the development of your suicidal thoughts. Together you and your therapist can work through the causes of your emotional pain and help you learn healthier ways of dealing with stress, triggers for relapse, and ways to handle suicidal urges.
Group therapy: Different groups are held multiple times every day and cover a wide range of topics. Through group sessions, you’ll connect with others while learning better communication skills, assertiveness, empowerment, and what to expect after discharge.
Family therapy: Family therapy can help loved ones understand what you are going through and allow them to be a part of the healing process. Sessions are held once a week and allow the time for you and your loved ones to work on coping skills, improve communication, and reframe the family dynamic. In addition to family therapy, regular visitation time is scheduled.
As our treatment approach is centered on treating the whole person, we offer a number of experiential programs in addition to our traditional therapeutic approaches. Some of these programs include:
- Recreational therapist
- Expressive therapy
Continuing Care and Levels of Care
Discharge planning starts the very first day of your treatment so we can make sure that when you are ready to leave Pacific Grove, you have an appropriate aftercare plan. When it is time for you to discharge, you and your loved ones will meet with a therapist who will connect you to appropriate referrals in the community that you can turn to for additional support. We will help to set you up with a place to live if you need one and can assist you in securing a place of employment should you require a job. We will do everything in our power to make sure the transition process is as smooth as possible.
At Pacific Grove, we offer different step-down treatment programs that have been very helpful for a number of our clients who are still in need of a structured treatment setting. Our partial hospitalization program (PHP) is held Monday through Friday from 8AM until 3PM and includes individual, group, and family therapy as well as educational sessions. People in this program receive treatment during the day and return home in the evening, which allows them to slowly integrate back into their community. Additionally, we have an intensive outpatient program (IOP) which is similar to our PHP, but is only held three days a week. Finally, some people feel that they have made enough progress in the inpatient program that they are ready to return home with referrals to traditional outpatient therapy and available community resources.