Melissa Magstadt, South Dakota Secretary of Health

Suicide Prevention

In 2020, Suicide is the leading cause of death among South Dakota youth ages 10 to 19 years old. The resources below offer information on misconceptions about suicide, data, and resources available for youth and parents of youth.

Why Suicide Prevention?

Suicide is a serious public health problem among youth and young adults. In South Dakota, suicide is the leading cause of death among youth ages 10 to 19 years old. Similarly, 23.1 percent of South Dakota's high school students considered suicide and 12.3 percent of South Dakota's high school student attempted suicide. While the causes of suicide are complex and caused by multiple factors, the goal of suicide prevention is to reduce factors that make the youth and young adults vulnerable and promote resilience. (Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System 2019).

South Dakota Suicide Data (

Suicide Prevention Video Series

South Dakota Suicide Prevention Resources

Text icare to 898211. Text 4 Hope Logo.
Helpline Center.


Text icare to 898211

Text4Hope is a texting program where high school students can share their concerns privately with a trusted individual. Texts are answered by the Helpline Center. logo.
Link to website.





Helpline Center
South DakotaCall 211 or Text five-digit zip code to 898211

When you dial 2-1-1, you talk to real people trained to help and connect you to the right resources, organizations, and people. 211 calls are answered 24/7.

          • For Spanish speakers, call 1-888-628-9454
          • For deaf/hard of hearing, call 1-800-799-4889

South Dakota Department of Social Services



CLICK HERE to find mental health and substance use disorder treatment services near you. logoText '605Strong' to 898211 or Visit

605 Strong provides counselors who are specifically trained to offer support and counseling to those experiencing anxiety, depression, stress, sadness, or fear related to COVID-19. Services are available 24/7.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

Call, Text, or Chat 988 or Visit

The 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline (formerly known as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline) is answered by the Helpline Center and offers 24/7 call, text and chat access to trained crisis counselors who can help people experiencing suicidal, substance use, and/or mental health crisis, or any other kind of emotional distress. People can also dial 988 if they are worried about a loved one who may need crisis support. To reach the Veterans Crisis Line, dial 988 and then Press 1.

Find information on SD suicide prevention efforts, resources, and training opportunities.


More resources:

Misconceptions About Suicide

Myth: People often commit suicide without showing any warning signs

Fact: Most people who commit suicide have communicated their plan beforehand, either clearly or implicitly

Myth: If a person committed suicide, his or her situation was probably so bad that death was the best solution

Fact: The life circumstances of suicidal individuals is often bad, but those circumstance are survived most people. Death is never a solution.

Myth: People who really want to die will find a way; there is no point helping to try to stop them

Fact: Due to their mental state, suicidal people are highly uncertain about taking their life away. They are confused between living and dying.

Myth: People who discuss or threaten suicide, actually will not do it

Fact: A large percentage of people who discuss about or threaten suicide will do it. So, take ALL threats seriously.

Myth: Only crazy people commit suicide

Fact: Although the majority of suicidal people are very unhappy, most suicidal acts are committed by people that are not considered as psychotic. Seventy-five percent of people who commit suicide are clinically depressed.

For more information: 10 Misconceptions About Suicide (

Suicide Prevention Resources for Parents

  • Training for Parents:

    • NAMI Ending the Silence is an engaging presentation that helps audience members learn about the warning signs of mental health conditions and what steps to take if you or a loved one are showing symptoms of a mental health condition.

    • Youth Mental Health First Aid reviews the unique risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems in adolescents ages 12-18. This 8-hour course emphasizes the importance of early intervention and covers how to help an adolescent in crisis or experiencing a mental health challenge.

    • The ASIST workshop is for anyone who wants to feel more comfortable, confident, and competent in helping to prevent the immediate risk of suicide. Over one million people have participated in this two-day, highly interactive, practical, practice-oriented workshop. Watch a video about ASIST.

    • QPR is a one to two hour training that teaches 3 simple steps that anyone can learn to help save a life from suicide. Just as people trained in CPR to help save thousands of lives each year, people trained in QPR learn how to recognize the warning signs of a suicide crisis and how to question, persuade, and refer someone to help.

    • CLICK HERE for more information and to request a training.

  • Jason Foundation Parent Resource Program - This website includes important information about suicide and how you as parent or guardian can help prevent youth suicide. It contains video of a parent and community seminar about suicide prevention strategies.

  • Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide - This website's parent section provides information to help you talk with your teens about suicide or the death of a friend by suicide.

  • Information Sheets - Cómo pueden los padres OBSERVAR ESCUCHAR AYUDAR (How Parents Can LOOK LISTEN AND HELP: Youth Suicide Is Preventable) - Oregon Youth Suicide Prevention Program. This Spanish-language webpage provides how you can recognize a changes in your child's behavior to help you indicate he or she is at risk of depression or suicide. It also outlines how you can intervene to prevent a crisis and connect your child with resources

  • Suicide Prevention: Facts for Parents - This information sheet focuses on suicide among high school students and how parents and high schools can help prevent it.

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