How Long Does It Take To Die From Hanging? The Minutes with 5 Helpful Tips

How long does it take to die from hanging? When someone hangs his or herself, the main cause of death is lack of oxygen. The person may also break a neck or be knocked unconscious.

How Long Does It Take To Die From Hanging?

The average time it takes to die by hanging is 4 minutes. This is because the person’s body needs oxygen all over. The lungs bring oxygen from the air to the blood, which then travels through the heart and brain to the rest of the body. It takes blood about one minute to make this trip.

Death by Hanging Causes Cerebral Hypoxia

A major problem in hanging is cerebral hypoxia. During the hanging process, the head hyperextends, transectoring the spinal cord and causing a lack of blood flow. Cerebral hypoxia and global ischemia result in death. The most commonly implicated mechanism is venous obstruction, but there are other factors as well.

Although cerebral hypoxia is the most common cause of death following a suicide attempt, this condition is not always fatal. In severe cases, the patient may suffer from a mild to severe neurologic disability. However, many survivors recover from this condition and the Glasgow Coma Scale score of 3 does not necessarily predict poor outcomes. The severity of the brain injury and the severity of the underlying neurologic problems can influence treatment options.

Also read: “Why does a dying person stare at the ceiling?”

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Symptoms of anoxia include confusion, agitation, and drowsiness. Patients may also experience cyanosis, a sign of lowered oxygen levels in the blood. Patients may even have seizures or lose consciousness.

Hanging Causes Pulmonary Oedema

Hanging generally results in death within a matter of minutes. Most hanged victims suffer from neurological and respiratory complications. Pulmonary oedema is the most common immediate complication. However, the onset of the complication may be delayed up to two hours after the incident. Suicide by hanging may be particularly deadly in the early stages, when the patient is in a state of unconsciousness.

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Scenario: A 19-year-old female patient was admitted to the ICU with a history of suicide by hanging. At admission, she was in respiratory distress and had peripheral cyanosis. Her pulse rate was 172/min, her SpO2 was -30%, and her blood pressure was 60mmHg systole. She was in a delirious state.


If a person hangs himself or herself, they’ll probably die in the first few minutes. The process breaks the connection between the neck and the spine, which results in a sharp drop in blood pressure. The result is the death of brain cells due to lack of oxygen. However, the death time can be prolonged depending on how strong the noose is.

Among the respondents, six out of eight said they had chosen hanging as a suicide method because they expected it to be fast. This would help them end their feelings of desperation and uncertainty in a short amount of time. In addition, two of the respondents indicated that they were impatient by clicking their fingers, indicating their desire for immediacy. The participants’ ideas of speed and certainty largely stemmed from the belief that hanging would instantly break their necks.

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Flashes of Light

People who survive a hanging death often report seeing flashes of light before they lose consciousness. The reason for this is uncertain, but it’s likely that they were trying to catch their breath. The body loses oxygen and is unable to breathe for several minutes. Then, the brain dies and the heart rejects the person. In about six to 10 minutes, the victim is dead.


If someone is hanging himself from a rope or a tree, he is at risk of dying because of a lack of oxygen. This causes a reduction in blood pressure, which causes the victim to lose consciousness. This also causes the carotid arteries to be compressed, which prevents oxygen from reaching the brain. This in turn causes brain death. If the person is unconscious for five or ten minutes, it is likely that he will die.

Despite the fact that hanging is the most common method of suicide, hanging is often considered a ‘clean’ method, as there is no blood or obvious damage to the body. Even for survivors, this method can leave a wide range of injuries, including cerebral anoxia, laryngeal fracture, cervical spine fracture, and carotid artery injury. The symbolic history of hanging is complex, with commentaries dating back to antiquity.