Suicide do's and dont's: Eight drugs, poisons, and other chemicals that you shouldn't use to kill yourself

I did a post on this topic when I first started this blog, but it needed improvement. Behold, improvement!

8. Sodium chloride (table salt)
Yeah, you read me right. Pretty much anything will kill you, if you get enough of it into you. This includes good ol' NaCl. You're probably looking at drinking a couple of gallons of salt water, and you'll puke long before you get most of that into you.

7. Methanol (wood alcohol)
It might work, and you get to get drunk while you're at it. But if it doesn't work, you'll end up blind and with holes in your brain.

6. Any radioactive substance
Even if you somehow manage to get your hands on something that is sufficiently radioactive to dose yourself with thousands of rems, dying is still going to take you at the very minimum a couple of days chock full of intense nausea and diarrhea.

5. Strychnine
As I discussed previously, a painful and terrifying way to die. You remain fully conscious and coherent as you experience repeated bouts of violent convulsions until finally your lungs stop working and you asphyxiate. Woo.

4. Any carcinogen with low acute toxicity
You'll need to a get a lot of it into you, which is a pain, and if you don't finish the job, you end up with cancer a couple of years (or more) down the road. I suppose the cancer might kill you, but that's an awfully roundabout and terribly painful and potentially very slow and agonizing way of ending things, don't you think?

3. Corrosive substances
These include common household chemicals like bleach, oven cleaner (sodium hydroxide), chlorine for the pool, and of course, that muriatic acid you have stockpiled in the garage. Some people seem to think that drinking one of these chemicals would be a good way to meet the reaper. Those people are wrong. Being strongly acidic or strongly alkaline, these chemicals will corrode anything organic, including your mouth, esophagus, and stomach. Then, I theorize, all of your stomach acid will escape into the trunk of your body, dissolving your internal organs. That doesn't sound terrible at all.

2. Paraquat
Paraquat is a herbicide found in many weed control products (e.g. Gramoxone). If you drink enough of it, you'll experience the joys of multisystem organ failure with death occurring within hours to a few days. However, should you fail to drink enough of it, it will selectively accumulate and persist in your lungs and slowly eat away at them while you spend several weeks gasping for breath in terrible pain before you expire. There is currently no antidote, and even people who manage to get lung transplants find that their new lungs are eventually destroyed as well, since the poison also hangs out in the fat surrounding them. Sadly, it is widely used as a means of suicide in many parts of the world.

1. Acetaminophen
Also known as paracetamol and Tylenol, acetaminophen is the most common cause of intentional self-poisoning in adults in many countries on account of it being widely available and cheap as hell. What doesn't appear to be widely available is the knowledge that this analgesic is highly toxic to pretty much just the liver and kidneys. Even if you take enough to destroy these organs, it can take up to two weeks to actually die. The pain is apparently excruciating.

17 chemically inspired comments:

kirsten said...

Woof! You make chemically-induced suicide look extremely unattractive! But most physician suicides are sccomplished by pharmaceutical means.

What about opiates/EtOH and tricyclic antidepressants? Those Fentanyl patches pack a good wallop, and there's no getting you back if you swallow enough amitriptyline.

Anonymous said...

I don't really complain, but where are the do's?

milkshake said...

Take a good mainline hit of smack and lay down for a long nap in the snow. Or roll a dewar-tank of liquid nitrogen into a small room, turn off the AC, open the gas valve and sit yourself comfortably.

I hope you find these suggestions useful - Don't fear the reaper.
And dont drink the enbalming fluid - it would make you ill.

Anonymous said...

Bein dead isnt so bad,
its the dying that kills ya!


Anonymous said...

Choice of death is as same individual right as a choice of life. I respect and admire those who fight against the challenge and do the best to stay alive. But I just wish that there is more support or drug available to assist those who wish to end one's lives painlessly.

Anonymous said...

As a student, I worked at a poison control center when I received a call late one night. A guy called up and in a morass of self-pity, stated that heh was going to take a lot of valium to kill himself.

I pointed out to him that that would be a pretty poor way to accomplish his goal. I then explained a much more effective means. High doses of both barbituates and opiates along with strong liquor. The alcohol would potentiate the respiratory-depressing effects of both and it would be a peaceful way to go.

He sounded shocked after i explained this to him. He called up wanting sympathy and received instead, an education.

Yeah, I know, I was young and arrogant and an asshole, but I repeat myself.

Anonymous said...

dont kill yourself.
anything is better than suicide.

Anonymous said...

Suicide is on my mind right now cause I have so much I'm going through & I caant handle all this anymore... However, this "don't" list just put me off.. I'll have to go google something that can tell me wwhat would work for certain.

Suicide is just a way of telling the Reaper "I quit" :) so... Soon, I'll give up my job called life & just quit!

Anonymous said...

1. Acetaminophen
Back when I had mental problems I ate a bottle of tylenol and advil, while trying to wash it down with mouthwash. I ended up being in bed for 3 days vomiting a lot. It did not kill me only made me wish I had never done that.

Anonymous said...

dude why the hell do u people want to commit sucide i mean im depressed to but come on!i mean really? its a permenent solution to a temperary problom im only 15 and i know this!

Anonymous said...

I know the pain of living, my mind is tortured every day. I can't see a better time ahead.I don't know how I'm going to keep going....

Anonymous said...

pathetic...those of you who want to continue your lives in constant agony of worrying about bills, lack of income, finding your "love "/"soulmate", etc. Those temporary miniscule emotions that you so desperately hold on to. Whats the whole point of living anyway?? We all have to die someday right? Why not today? The pain only occurs once. How long have you believed the lies your parents conditioned you to believe? Suicide is bad, death is evil, God is real?? all these puesdo-truths. Only one truth exists and that is that we all must die, wont you die with me today?

Anonymous said...

Hmmm or just take an arrow to the knee..

Anonymous said...

I came here for advice and not warnings. Don't worry, the internet is big and I will find what I am looking for.

Anonymous said...

death sounds like heaven...when life is like hell !

Alexis said...

Im going to try a mix of xanax and percocet and suboxone along with alchohol... im going to tape my mouth so i dont vomit them out, im not triyng to get help or nothing, i just want to make sure if its going to work. Ive been planing this since my grandpa got his throat opened in front of me and the police are trying to incriminate me! I have to die so they stop looking to me and start looking for the real killers... my only consern is my son, but ive lost everything i love, from my buisness to my familly so im done... this is going to happend tonight!!! Sorry for my bad english im from Puerto Rico and i just want to feel that i tell this story to someone (×_×)

Anonymous said...

I made the mistake on getting caught after slitting my throat. I got most of the vein and half my juggular. A couple minutes was walked in on. We all know how succesful I had been. Next try I will be better equipped. Just read about a lot of great ideas online. Now that its colder... Going take a bunch of valiums, trazadone,bunch of benos and drink a lot of booze camping. Just need a pillow and an open tent. (Its gotta be really cold) I'll just go to sleep. No coat or blankets needed. Maybe I'll bring a deck of cards. Maybe it might even pass as an accident.