Suicide is now the second leading cause of death among people ages 10 to 24, topped only by accidents. After declining for nearly two decades, the suicide rate among Americans ages 10 to 24 jumped 56 percent between 2007 and 2017, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Bridge Magazine reports Michigan youth are committing suicide at nearly double the rate of just over a decade ago. The number of children and teens in the United States who visited emergency rooms for suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts doubled between 2007 and 2015.
Why? Public health researchers do not have an answer. Possible explanations include increase of social media, cyberbullying, lack of sleep, to shows like Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why that glamorizes suicide. But the causes remain unknown as research continues.
During the teenage years, the warning signs of depression and possible suicidal thoughts can be vague, when it’s often perfectly normal to go through phases of moodiness and withdrawal. According to experts in the field, signs of serious mental health problems vary from person to person: anger in one person, chronic headaches in another, excessive crying in others.
Learn more about the youth suicide crisis and how parents, family and friends can help. Take a couple of minutes to watch this short Mayo Clinic video
Explore the following articles:
- New York Times: Why Are Young Americans Killing Themselves?
- Bridge Michigan: Youth suicide rate doubles. What parents can do
- Mayo Clinic: Teen suicide: What parents need to know
- CNN: Number of children going to ER with suicidal thoughts, attempts doubles
- Medpage Today: Youth Suicides, County-Level Poverty Go Hand in Hand
Lastly, there are a number of films on youth suicide available to stream or rent on Netflix, Amazon, and other sites.
Here are a couple: