Getting Help

Getting Help

The Nunavut Department of Health (and the Department of Social Services) offers community, regional, and out-of-territory mental health services to help people who are thinking of committing suicide. If you are thinking of suicide, or if you think someone you know might feel like hurting themselves, talk to a nurse or doctor at your community Health Centre. You can also talk to your local social worker or wellness counsellor.  However, if the risk of suicide is immediate, call the RCMP.

You may also chose to talk to a friend, a family member, or someone you trust, like a teacher or Elder.

You can also call the Kamatsiaqtut Help Line for support:
(867) 979-3333 or toll free at (800) 265-3333.


For more information go to Embrace Life Council.


Most people who seriously consider suicide do not want to die. Rather, they see suicide as a solution to a problem and a way to end their pain. People who seriously consider suicide feel hopeless, helpless, and worthless. A person who feels hopeless believes that no one can help with a particular event or problem. A person who feels helpless is unable to take steps to solve problems. A person who feels worthless is overwhelmed with a sense of personal failure.

Most people who seriously consider or attempt suicide have one or more of the following risks:

  • A personal or family history of suicide attempts;
  • A family history of suicide attempts or completed suicide;
  • A personal or family history of severe anxiety, depression or other mental health problems, such as bi-polar (manic-depressive illness) or schizophrenia; or
  • An alcohol or drug problem – such as alcoholism

Anytime someone talks about suicide, or about wanting to die or disappear, even in a joking manner, the conversation must be taken seriously. A suicide attempt—even if the attempt did not harm the person—also must be taken seriously. Don't be afraid to talk to someone you think may be considering suicide. There is no proof that talking about suicide leads to suicidal thinking or suicide. Once you know the person's thoughts on the subject, you may be able to help prevent a suicide.

People who have suicidal thoughts may not seek help because they feel they cannot be helped. This usually is not the case. Many people with suicidal thoughts have medical conditions that can be successfully treated. People who have suicidal thoughts often have depression or substance abuse, and both of these conditions can be treated. It is important to seek help when suicidal thoughts occur because medical treatment usually is successful in diminishing these thoughts.

The possibility of suicide is most serious when a person has a plan for committing suicide that includes:

  • Having the means, such as weapons or medicines, available to commit suicide or do harm to another person.;
  • Having set a time and place to commit suicide; or
  • Thinking there is no other way to solve the problem or end the pain.

People who are considering suicide often are undecided about choosing life or death.

With compassionate help, they may choose to live.

For more information go to Embrace Life Council.