How is suicidal ideation assessed?

Updated: Sep 25, 2018
  • Author: Stephen Soreff, MD; Chief Editor: Glen L Xiong, MD  more...
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Answer

Answer

Determine whether the person has any thoughts of hurting him or herself. Suicidal ideation is highly linked to completed suicide. Some inexperienced clinicians have difficulty asking this question. They fear the inquiry may be too intrusive or that they may provide the person with an idea of suicide. In reality, patients appreciate the question as evidence of the clinician's concern. A positive response requires further inquiry.


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