Suicidal Thoughts Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Suicidal Thoughts article.

Acute: Of abrupt onset, in reference to a disease. Acute often also connotes an illness th...

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Alcohol abuse: Use of alcoholic beverages to excess, either on individual occasions (binge...

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Alcoholism: Physical dependence on alcohol to the extent that stopping alcohol use would b...

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Anhedonia: Loss of the capacity to experience pleasure. The inability to gain pleasure fro...

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Antidepressants: Anything, and especially a drug, used to prevent or treat depression.

Antipsychotic: A medication (or another measure) that is believed to be effective in the t...

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Anxiety: A feeling of apprehension and fear, characterized by physical symptoms such as pa...

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Arthritis: Inflammation of a joint. When joints are inflamed they can develop stiffness, w...

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Assisted suicide: The deliberate hastening of death by a terminally ill patient with assi...

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Autopsy: A postmortem examination. Also known as necropsy.

Binge drinking: The dangerous practice of consuming large quantities of alcoholic beverag...

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Bipolar disorder: A mood disorder sometimes called manic-depressive illness or manic-depr...

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Bisexual: An individual who engages in both heterosexual and homosexual sexual relations. ...

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Borderline personality disorder: A personality type characterized by difficulty forming an...

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Brain: The portion of the central nervous system that is located within the skull. It func...

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Breathing: The process of respiration, during which air is inhaled into the lungs through ...

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Cancer: An abnormal growth of cells which tend to proliferate in an uncontrolled way and, ...

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Carbon monoxide poisoning: A potentially deadly condition caused by breathing carbon monox...

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CDC: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the US agency charged with tracking a...

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Cell: The basic structural and functional unit of any living thing. Each cell is a small c...

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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: The US agency charged with tracking and invest...

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Cerebrospinal fluid: A watery fluid that is continuously produced and absorbed and that fl...

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Chronic: In medicine, lasting a long time. A chronic condition is one that lasts 3 months ...

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Cocaine: A substance derived from the leaves of the coca plant that is a bitter, addictive...

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Cognitive: Having to do with thought, judgment, or knowledge.

Contrast: Short for "contrast media." Contrast media are X-ray dyes used to provide contra...

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Depression: An illness that involves the body, mood, and thoughts and that affects the way...

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Diagnosis: 1 The nature of a disease; the identification of an illness. 2 A ...

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Dialectical behavioral therapy: A mode of treatment designed for people with borderline p...

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Discharge: 1.The flow of fluid from part of the body, such as from the nose or vag...

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Endocrine: Pertaining to hormones and the glands that make and secrete them into the blood...

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Epilepsy (seizure disorder): When nerve cells in the brain fire electrical impulses...

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Eskalith: See: Lithium.

Euthanasia: The practice of intentionally ending a life in order to relieve pain and suffe...

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Family history: The family structure and relationships within the family, including inform...

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FDA: Food and Drug Administration.

Food and Drug Administration: An agency within the US Public Health Service that provides ...

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Gay: A person who is homosexual, especially a male homosexual. The word "gay" in this rega...

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Genetic: Having to do with genes and genetic
information.

Heroin: Semisynthetic drug derived from morphine. Discovered in 1874, it was introduced co...

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HIV: Acronym for the Human Immunodeficiency Virus, the cause of AIDS (acquired immunodefi...

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Homicide: 1. The killing of a person. 2. Strictly speaking, the killing of a...

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Hormone: A chemical substance produced in the body that controls and regulates the activit...

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Hypothalamus: The area of the brain that secretes substances that influence pituitary and ...

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Impulsivity: Inclined to act on impulse rather than thought. People who are overly impulsi...

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Indicate: In medicine, to make a treatment or procedure advisable because of a particular ...

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Insomnia: The perception or complaint of inadequate or poor-quality sleep due to a number ...

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Kidney: One of a pair of organs located in the right and left side of the abdomen. The kid...

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Lesbian: A female homosexual.

Lethal: Deadly.

Lifetime risk: The risk of developing a disease during ones lifetime or dying of the disea...

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Lithium: A naturally occurring salt that, in purified form, is used to treat certain psych...

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Lithobid: See: Lithium.

Major depression: A disease with certain characteristic signs and symptoms that interferes...

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Meditation: A typically self-directed practice for relaxing the body and calming the mind....

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Methadone: A synthetic opiate. The most common medical use for methadone is as a legal sub...

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Morphine: A powerful narcotic agent that has strong analgesic (pain relief) action and oth...

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Motor: Something that produces or refers to motion. For example, a motor neuron is a nerve...

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Nerve: A bundle of fibers that uses electrical and chemical signals to transmit sensory an...

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Nerve cell: See: Neuron.

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Neuroscience: The study of the brain and nervous system, including molecular neuroscience...

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Neurotransmitter: A chemical that is released from a nerve cell which thereby transmits an...

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NIH: National Institutes of Health.

NIMH: Stands for the National Institute of Mental Health, one of the National Institutes o...

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Nurse: 1) A person trained, licensed, or skilled in nursing. 2) To feed an infant at the ...

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Objective: In a microscope, the objective (also called the objective lens) is the lens nea...

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Oxycodone: Oxycodone is the active ingredient in OxyContin. Oxycodone is an opioid, a clos...

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Pain: An unpleasant sensation that can range from mild, localized discomfort to agony. Pa...

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Parasuicide: An apparent attempt at suicide, commonly called a suicidal gesture, in which ...

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Personality disorder: A disorder characterized by the chronic use of mechanisms of coping ...

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Physician-assisted suicide: The voluntary termination of one's own life by administration ...

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Pituitary: 1. As an adjective, pertaining to the pituitary gland or its hormonal se...

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Poisoning: Taking a substance that is injurious to health or can cause death. Poisoning i...

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Predispose: To make more likely or render susceptible. Smoking predisposes to a number of ...

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Pregnancy: The state of carrying a developing embryo or fetus within the female body. Thi...

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Prescription: A physician's order for the preparation and administration of a drug or dev...

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Prevalence: The proportion of individuals in a population having a disease or characterist...

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Proteins: Large molecules composed of one or more chains of amino acids in a specific orde...

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Psychiatric: Pertaining to or within the purview of psychiatry, the medical specialty conc...

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Psychiatry: The medical specialty that is concerned with the prevention, diagnosis, and tr...

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Psychotherapy: The treatment of a behavior disorders, mental illness, or any other conditi...

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Quality of life: The patient's ability to enjoy normal life activities. Quality of life is...

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Rheumatoid arthritis: An autoimmune disease characterized by chronic inflammation of joint...

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SAMHSA: A part of the U.S. Public Health Service, SAMHSA was established in 1992 and direc...

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Schizophrenia: One of several brain diseases whose symptoms may include loss of personalit...

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Seizure: Uncontrolled electrical activity in the brain, which may produce a physical conv...

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Self-harm: see: non-suicidal self injury.

Serotonin: A neurotransmitter that is involved in the transmission of nerve impulses. Sero...

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Sleep: The body's rest cycle.

Sleep disorders: Any disorder that affects, disrupts, or involves sleep. The most common...

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Stress: In a medical or biological context stress is a physical, mental, or emotional fact...

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Substance: 1. Material with particular features.
2. The material that...

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Substance abuse: The excessive use of a substance, especially alcohol or a drug. (There is...

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Suicidal: Pertaining to suicide. the taking of ones own life. As in a suicidal gesture, su...

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Suicide prevention: Diminishing the risk of suicide. It may not be possible to eliminate e...

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Therapy: The treatment of disease. Therapy is synonymous with treatment.

Trauma: A physical or emotional injury.

World Health Organization: The subagency of the United Nations (UN) that is concerned with...

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Youth: The time between childhood and maturity.

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Medical Dictionary