Facts About Suicide
Whether you're concerned about a loved one or merely curious to learn more about the subject, here are some important facts and statistics that will get you acquainted with the problem of suicide.
Fact #1: The toll that suicide takes
Every year worldwide, more than 1 million people succeed in killing themselves. Countless others will attempt suicide. (Springen, 2010; Sanders, 2012) This equates to around one successful suicide every 40 seconds somewhere in the world, and one suicide every 17 minutes within the United states. For every suicide that occurs, it's estimated that there are at least 6 people left to pick up the pieces afterwards. (TCCY, 2004)
Fact #2: Suicide is the #3 killer among the nation's youth
Suicide is the third leading cause of death among 15- to 24-year-olds, and the 11th biggest killer of Americans overall. (Springen, 2010)
Fact #3: For every person who kills themselves, many more try
Most suicides are preceded by one or more non-fatal attempts. In fact, estimates are that for every suicide death, there are at least 20 non-fatal attempts among adults (Sanders, 2012), and as many as 300-350 serious attempts for every suicide among youth. (Garfinkel, 1986) Whatever the true number, it's obvious that the amount of people who succeed in killing themselves are only a fraction of the people so distraught that they attempt to take their own life.
Fact #4: Women try to kill themselves more than men, but men succeed more often
According to the CDC, the male-to-female suicide ratio is four to one, meaning 4-times as many men as women kill themselves, though women may actually attempt suicide more often. (Westly, 2010)
Fact #5: Suicide can run in the family
A Danish study in 2002 found that having a family history of suicide raises your own chances of the same fate by 2 ½ times. (Springen, 2010) Whether this is due to genetic or family environment factors (or most likely a combination of both), it is clear that suicide can run in families.