United States

US suicide rate increasing 3-31-18

Source: "How and where growing numbers of Americans are taking their own lives"  

US SuicideFrom the article: "In nearly all other OECD countries, suicide has declined since 2000. In America, however, from 2003 the number began to grow by 1,000 a year and did not stop. This climb has been almost perfectly constant. In 2016, the latest year for which detailed data are available, there were 45,000 suicides in America: 23,000 of them by gun, 11,700 by hanging and 5,300 by overdose. For every two women who committed suicide in 2016, so did seven men. White men kill themselves at nearly three times the rate of black, Hispanic and Asian men.The suicide rate in rural counties is 78% higher than that in big cities. Alaska and Montana, two of the states with the lowest population density, are the worst-afflicted—suicide is five times as likely there as in the District of Columbia, which has America’s lowest rate."

From the article: "There is a strong correlation between the suicide rate and the Republican share of the vote in the presidential election. Solidly Democratic east-coast states like New York and Massachusetts have some of the lowest rates. America is an extraordinarily violent country. Its firearm-murder rate is far above the rest of the rich world. Yet there are roughly two gun suicides for every gun homicide. Easy access to guns undoubtedly worsens matters. Guns are perhaps the most efficient means of getting the job done: 83% of attempted suicides by gun are successful, compared with 61% of hangings and a mere 1.5% of intentional drug overdoses. Those who try to commit suicide and fail can receive therapy and recover. According to a Harvard study, only one in ten people who survive a suicide attempt go on to kill themselves. In Britain, where guns are much less easily available, hangings make up nearly 60% of suicides."

From the article: "Determining the cause of these dispiriting trends has proved hard. The suicide rate seems to have risen independently of the lurches in America’s economy. Anne Case and Angus Deaton, two Princeton economists, have argued that a toxic cocktail of opioid addiction and stagnating economic prospects is worsening the problem of premature death, including by suicide, among middle-aged whites."suicide