From the UK Daily Mail.
Suicide is the cause of more deaths than car crashes, according to an alarming new study.
The number of people who commit suicide in the U.S. has drastically increased while deaths from car accidents have dropped, making suicide the leading cause of injury death.
Suicides via falls or poisoning have risen significantly and experts fear that there could be many more unaccounted for, particularly in cases of overdose.
The results were compiled using National Center for Health Statistics data gathered from 2000 to 2009.Researchers noted a 25 per cent decrease in fatal car accidents, medicalxpress.com reported, while deaths from falls rose 71 per cent, poisoning 128 per cent and from suicide 15 per cent.
[…]Previous research has suggested that suicide rates go up during recessions and times of economic crisis.’Economic problems can impact how people feel about themselves and their futures as well as their relationships with family and friends,’ Feijun Luo of CDC’s Division of Violence Prevention told Bloomberg.
‘Prevention strategies can focus on individuals, families, neighborhoods or entire communities to reduce risk factors.’
Suicide is now the most frequent cause of injury deaths, followed by car crashes, poisoning, falls and murder.
The study also looked at gender and race, concluding that fewer women died from the four main causes than men.
Men especially are the hardest hit, because in a recession, they have a lot of anxiety about their provider role.
NBC News explains:
Middle-aged men from disadvantaged backgrounds are 10 times more likely to commit suicide, often because they have lost a sense of identity and masculine pride, researchers said on Thursday.
In a report commissioned by the British helpline charity the Samaritans, health experts explored why men in their 30s, 40s and 50s are at such a substantially higher risk of ending their own lives.
The findings suggest suicide is not simply a mental health problem, the researchers said, but also one of men’s place in societies and of societies’ inability to adapt to men’s needs when trying to deal with depression, anxiety and other problems.
[…]”The changing nature of the labour market over the last 60 years has affected working class men,” it said. “With the decline of traditional male industries, they have lost not only their jobs but also a source of masculine pride and identity.”
The World Health Organisation estimates that every year, almost a million people commit suicide – a rate of 16 per 100,000, or one every 40 seconds. It also estimates that for every suicide, there are up to 20 attempted ones.
Men are more likely to commit suicide than women in almost every country in the world, and the WHO says the main risk factors are mental illness – primarily depression – and alcohol abuse, as well as violence, loss, abuse and pressures from cultural and social backgrounds.
The Samaritans study found that in Britain on average about 3,000 middle-aged men from disadvantaged backgrounds kill themselves each year.
I can’t speak for everyone, but it seems obvious to me that a lot of people, especially young people who have college debt and can’t find jobs, need to be asking themselves an important question: are you better off now than you were four years ago?