Several past studies had established that an individual with a mental health issue is more likely to commit or attempt suicide. However, according to the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) released recently by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than half of the people who committed suicide in 27 states of the United States in 2015 had never been diagnosed with any mental ailment. The report also mentioned that the overall suicide rates increased by more than 30 percent in nearly half of the country during 1999-2016.
The findings of the study are based on an analysis of trends in age-adjusted suicide rates among individuals above 10 years of age. These trends were analyzed on the basis of state and sex, across six consecutive three year periods (1999–2016). To study these trends, data from the National Vital Statistics System for 50 states and the District of Columbia was used. The data from the National Violent Death Reporting System that covered 27 states in 2015 was used to examine the contributing circumstances among the deceased with and without known mental health conditions.
On analyzing the data, the researchers found that:
- The suicide rates among males had increased in 34 states and in 43 states among females during 1999-2016.
- Around 44 percent of decedents were not affected by a known mental health condition in 27 states in 2015.
- People in the age group of 45-64 years saw the biggest increase in suicide rate. On the other hand, people aged 10-24 had the lowest rate.
- Around two-thirds of decedents with a known mental health condition had a history of mental health or substance use treatment.
- Decedents without a known mental health condition had a significantly higher likelihood of facing a relationship problem/loss compared to those with mental conditions (45.1 percent versus 39.6) or experiencing any life stressors (50.5 percent versus 47.2).
- Around 23 percent of the decedents without known mental health conditions was less likely to have a history of suicidal ideation. Only 10.3 percent were found to have committed a prior suicide attempt.
North Dakota saw highest increase in suicide rate
The analysis also studied the rate of suicides of various states in the country. It was found by the experts that it had increased in every U.S. state except Nevada. Although the suicide rate in Nevada decreased by 1 percent, the state actually found its mention as one with the ninth-highest suicide rate in the country. The highest increase was found in North Dakota – around 58 percent.
The analysis of the annual suicide rate revealed that Montana’s suicide rate was at the top – 29.2 per 100,000 people per year, while the District of Columbia was at the bottom – 6.9 suicides per 100,000 people per year.
Offering right kind of support is crucial
According to the CDC, it is important to strengthen the availability of prevention strategies in different parts of the country. This includes lending economic support in the form of housing stabilization policies and financial support, imparting training about coping skills to help people handle everyday stressors, promoting a sense of belonging, easy access to emotional and social support and creating a protective environment.
Apart from these, it is also important to strengthen and lend support to the existing behavioral health providers across the country so that individuals aggrieved with any mental issue can seek help. If you know someone looking for details about some of the best mental health rehab centers in the country, the 247 Mental Health Helpline can be of great help. Call us at our 247 mental health helpline (855) 653-8178 or chat online with one of our representative to know about the most affordable treatment programs offered by us.