US suicides increased by 25 percent from 1999 to 2016

 

Mental health, substance abuse, life stresses and economic despair fuel crisis

US suicides increased by 25 percent from 1999 to 2016

By
Kate Randall

9 June 2018

Suicide rates increased by 25 percent across the United States over the two decades ending in 2016. According to research published Thursday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 25 states experienced a rise in suicides of more than 30 percent.

The report follows the release the previous week by the CDC of a study showing a rise in deaths between 2013 and 2016 among US children and teens aged 10-19. While deaths in this age group declined between 1999 and 2013, from 2013 to 2016 the death rate, as well as the total number of deaths, increased by a shocking 12 percent.

Taken together, these two reports paint a picture of an immense social crisis confronting the American population. Increasing numbers of people, both young and old, are choosing to take their own lives in the face of personal crises, mental health issues, substance abuse and economic despair.

Using data from the National Vital Statistics System for 50 states and the District of Columbia, the CDC researchers analyzed suicide rates for people 10 years and older from 1999 through 2016. The circumstances surrounding suicides were also compared for 2015 in the 27 states with complete data participating in the CDC’s National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS).

The CDC studied six consecutive three-year periods from 1999 to 2016 to calculate the number of suicides per 100,000 persons per year. While overall the US experienced a 25 percent rise in the suicide rate, individual state increases ranged from a 6 percent increase in Delaware to a nearly 58 percent increase in North Dakota. An estimated 45,000 American lives were…

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