Facts About Suicide
- Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, claiming more than twice many lives each year as homicides.
- On average, more than 33,000 Americans died each year between 2001 and 2009 as a result of suicide – more than 1 person every 15 minutes.
- More than 8 million adults reported having serious suicidal thoughts in the past year, 2.5 million people reported making a suicide plan in the past year, and 1.1 million reported a suicide attempt in the past year.
- Nearly 16 percent of students in grades 9 to 12 report having seriously considered suicide, and 7.8 percent report having attempted suicide once or more in the past 12 months
Suicide Warning Signs
- Talking about wanting to die; feeling hopeless, trapped, or in unbearable pain; being a burden to others;
- Looking for a way to kill oneself;
- Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs;
- Acting anxious, agitated, or reckless;
- Sleeping too little or too much;
- Withdrawing or feeling isolated;
- Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge; and
- Displaying extreme mood swings.
What you can do if you believe someone is at risk of suicide:
- Ask them if they are thinking about killing themselves. (This will not put the idea into their heads, or make it more likely that they will attempt suicide.);
- Call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800.273.TALK (8255);
- Take the person to an emergency room or seek help from a medical or mental health professional;
- Remove any objects that could be used in a suicide attempt; and
- If possible, do not leave the person alone.
- Suicide is the third leading cause of death among persons aged 15-24 years, the second among persons aged 25-34 years, the fourth among persons aged 35-54 years, and the eighth among persons 55-64 years.
- Suicide among males is four times higher than among females and represents 79% of all U.S. suicides.
- Females are more likely than males to have had suicidal thoughts.
- Firearms are the most commonly used method of suicide among males (56%).
- Poisoning is the most common method of suicide for females (37.4%).