Missoula Measures - Suicide
- How are we doing?
- Related data
- Missoula Youth Suicide
- Related Measures
- Related websites
Why this topic?
Nationally, suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death among young people 15 to 24 years of age, taking more than 12 of every 100,000 American young people. Nationally, 11 of every 100,000 Americans of all ages took their own lives. More men than women died by suicide, and firearms were the most common method used by both. National Institute of Mental Health
These numbers do not represent all the suicide attempts, nor deaths not reported as suicide, e.g., motor vehicle crashes caused by suicidal behavior; family members withholding information for insurance reasons; or fear of the stigma attached to suicide, etc. Nationwide, there are 25 suicide attempts for every completed suicide; and only a small percentage of suicide-related injuries are treated by medical personnel and subsequently reported as attempted suicide.
Missoula Suicide Prevention Network web page - Lists goals, events, activities and projects to reduce suicides in Missoula County. Under the direction of the Health Promotion Division of the Missoula City/County Health Dept.
In Montana, women attempt suicide three times more often than men, but men complete suicide four times more often than women. This is because men use more lethal means, particularly firearms. Missoula Suicide Prevention Network
Suicide rates in the Western states have consistently been higher than those for the U.S. in general. Montana has consistently ranked in the top 5 for the highest suicide rate.
In many states, suicide in the Native American population is higher than among Caucasians. However, in Montana, the numbers are nearly identical.
Missoula County’s rate of firearm suicides is higher than the national rate, and, along with Montana, ranks very high when compared with other Western states.
Of the 77 reported suicides in Missoula County from 1998 through 2002:
- 6% were under 20 years of age
- 42% were between ages 21 and 41
- 12% were over age 62
- 81% were male
When attempting suicide, men are apt to use more lethal methods that cannot be interrupted, like guns and hanging.
Women attempt suicide 3-4 times more often than men but are more likely to use drugs or poisons. Also, women are more likely to seek and accept help when faced with depression or other problems.
|Healthy People 2020 Target|
|Reduce adult suicide rate||11.3||10.2|
Montana Youth Risk Behavior Trend Data - Suicide
|Felt sad or depressed enough that stopped doing usual activity||26||27||26||26||26||27||25||24|
|Seriously considered attempting suicide||19||19||19||18||15||17||15||17|
|Made plan about how to attempt suicide||16||16||15||15||13||13||12||15|
|Actually attempted suicide||7||10||10||10||8||8||6.5||16|
|Had a suicide attempt requiring medical treatment||3||4||3||3||3||3||2||4|
Montana YRBS Trend Data
National Suicide Trends - Approximately:
- 75% are male
- 51% are with a gun
- 18% (and rising) are by poisoning, which includes prescription drugs
Alcohol and Suicide
- Alcohol is involved over a quarter of all suicides in the US (approximately 7500 per year).
- Suicide is 120 times more prevalent among adult alcoholics than in the general population.
- Alcohol abusers have higher rates of both attempted and completed suicide than non-abusers.
- More than one-third of suicide victims used alcohol just prior
National suicide demographics - American Fundation for Suicide Prevention
More regarding prescription drug abuse and suicide:
U.S. emergency department visits for drug-related suicide attempts by young adult males rose 55 percent between 2005 and 2009.
ER visits for drug-related suicide attempts involving antidepressants among young adult males in those four years jumped 155 percent, and cases involving anti-anxiety and insomnia medications rose 93 percent.
Emergency department visits for drug-related suicide attempts involving narcotic pain relievers nearly doubled among men aged 35 to 49, and almost tripled among men aged 50 and older.
These findings are based on data from the 2005-09 Drug Abuse Warning Network reports.
National Suicide Rates by State - by state, age, race
Montana Suicide Rates by County - state suicide prevention plan, page 7
(NOTE: Suicide statistics are often 3 years behind the current year.)
Research has shown that 90% of people who die by suicide have a diagnosable mental disorder at the time of their death. Of those, 60% suffer from both treated and untreated depression. American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
Suicide rates are higher for persons who are single, divorced, separated, or widowed. Social and environmental factors associated with suicidal behavior can be characterized by loss, such as job or home loss, incarceration, financial difficulties, unwanted move, diagnosis of a chronic or terminal illness among others. In the adolescent population, bullying and gender identity issues may be major contributors.
However, no single factor causes suicide. It is usually a complex combination of a number of factors.
Some age or socioeconomic groups may be at a higher risk. As the economy or societal norms change, so does the vulnerable population. Data, statistics, prevention info at AFSP
As with violence against others, alcohol and drug use are contributing factors for people at risk for suicide.
Youth Suicide – From Washington State Youth Suicide Prevention Plan, 1995
- Nationwide, the rate of suicide among youth (aged 15 to 24 years) has increased 200% since the 1960’s compared to 17% in the general population. Male youth are four times more likely to complete suicide than are female youth. Females are at greater risk for suicide attempts than male youth or any other age group.
- Depression, alcohol abuse, social alienation, and access to lethal means are major risk factors for youth suicide.
- Firearms are the most common method of suicide among the 15- to 24-year-old age group. The access to a loaded gun in the home is the single most powerful risk factor. Suicide risk attributed to alcohol use, living alone, and not having a high school degree together match the risks of gun ownership.
- Youth groups at risk for suicide or suicidal behavior include: white males, Native Americans, youth struggling with depression, substance use, school problems, high-achieving youth, gay and lesbian youth, victims of assault or abuse, and runaway youth. Note that youth considered academic "high achievers" are among those who may be at risk.
- In a study done in 2000, alcohol was involved in 36 percent of homicides, 12 percent of male suicides, and 8 percent of female suicides involving people under 21. Homicide was the second leading cause of death for 15- to 24-year-olds. NAS report Reducing Underage Drinking, 62.
For the past several years, the county has averaged 1-2 teen suicides per year; almost all have been males. Missoula Fetal, Infant and Child Mortality Review Team
Suicide.org Prevention, Awareness and Support
CDC Leading Causes of Death - by state
Women's Health Statistics - by state; National Institute for Health; includes suicides.
Healthy People 2020 - background on national public health status of this topic and many others.