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 Safety Planning for Suicidal Youth
The DoBetter Action Agenda

As mental health care professionals, whenever we work with a person who has suicidal thoughts, we create a “Safety Plan.”

In general, a safety plan is a sheet of paper that has 4 core components.  

1- Warning signs a person can identify within themselves that could trigger suicidal
thoughts/mental distress.

2- Coping strategies that they can use on their own to calm things down.

3- People they can turn to for help and support if they cannot calm down on their own

4- Crisis numbers or contacts that they can use if things do not seem to get better.

You can find hundreds of free safety plans on the internet.
                                                       
                                                             988 and 741741
MUST be on there!

Too often, these plans are filled out with a mental health care professional and then thrown in the garbage or put in the medical chart for medico-legal purposes alone.

The whole point of a safety plan is to PRACTICE it.  It shouldn’t be a piece of paper just stuck on the fridge. It should be a play book that is memorized and refined, ready to pull out at any time- ready for action.

The Safety Plan that I have designed here is renamed as the “DoBetter Action Agenda.” The purpose is the same, but its named this way to you and your child feel more of a “call to action” to practice this plan and follow the steps on the agenda.

I have added some components of SUDS [Subjective Units of Distress Scale] to help the child and parent get a sense on whether the temperature of the crisis changes while going through the plan.

You don’t need a mental health provider to create a safety plan. You and your child filling it out together are all you need. Having a safety plan in place creates a step by step protocol for you and your child in the event that there is a crisis.

This reduces ambiguity about how to handle a crisis in your home, and makes it easier to follow when there is a stressful situation at hand.

Join my Masterclass to learn More.

                                                                 Sounds like a plan?

                                                                      

Click HERE to print it!

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