If you need immediate help, please call 911 or the Military Crisis Line at 800-273-8255 and press 1

Depression & Suicide

September is Suicide Prevention Month. Join the Real Warriors Campaign in sharing resources to help recognize when a warrior may be at risk for suicide and what to do when you see warning signs. Start by exploring the articles, materials and videos below.

Depression is a common, treatable, but serious psychological health concern. It can interfere with your daily duties and even increase your risk for other health concerns.

The underlying reasons for depression vary from person to person, but it can affect anyone, anywhere, at any time. It impacts your thoughts, feelings and actions and if left untreated is one of many risk factors for suicide—another grave, but preventable concern.

These two concerns are not always linked, but if you or someone you know is feeling depressed or has thoughts of suicide, it is important to reach out for help right away. In an emergency, call 911 or the Military Crisis Line at 800-273-8255, press 1. If not an emergency, talk to a health care professional as soon as possible for help understanding and treating your symptoms.

Recommended Resources

Dealing with Depression: Symptoms and Treatment

Depression is a common psychological concern that can affect anyone, anywhere, at any time. This is true whether or not you serve in uniform. Depression is not just a passing feeling of “being sad” and you can’t just “snap out of it.” It’s a medical condition that can and should be treated.

The first step to getting effective treatment is speaking openly and honestly with a health care provider about how you feel.

You Are Your Friend's Biggest Support

Although suicide is a serious public health concern, it is preventable. You can help by keeping an eye out for warriors who may be struggling. Getting them support quickly is important. So, speak up if you are concerned about the psychological wellbeing of a service member or veteran in your life.

The information below can help you learn to recognize when a warrior may be at risk for suicide and what to do when you identify a problem.

You Are Not Alone: Suicide Prevention Tools for Warriors

Service members may face emotional or psychological concerns following deployment and from the stress of military life. For some, these feelings can lead to thoughts of hurting or killing one’s self. Warriors may be left believing there is no escape from how they’re feeling. Know that you are not alone. Help is available and it works. For example, a 2015 study found that treatment can prevent future suicide attempts among service members with current suicidal ideation or a recent suicide attempt.