Respond to the following based on the information in the “Suicide Rates by Age Group” article:
1. What has been the trend in suicide rates over the past few years?
Suicide rates have seen a decrease in recent years compared to previous data from the 1970’s to early 2000’s. Preliminary data for 2003 placed suicide at number 11 cause of death overall, with a provisional age-adjusted rate of 10.5 per 100000, a 3.7% decline from the 2002 age-adjusted rate. For ages 10-45, deaths caused by suicide are still in the top 10 for causes of death.
2. What part of the U.S. has the highest suicide rate?
The western part of the United States had the highest suicide rates (14.7 suicides per 100,000).
3. List three risk factors for suicide.
*Firearm in the home
*Bipolar or major depressive disorder
4. Many researchers worry that suicide rates for adolescents and older adults continue to increase. What does the research data show about these age groups?
The data, especially figure 1, shows us that suicide rates have declined all the way around the board. Adolescence and adults saw a spike in the 1980’s and early 1990’s, but since about 1994, numbers have been declining.
5. In the U.S., what demographic has the highest rate of suicide?
White men, especially older white men, had the highest rate for suicide compared to other demographics. Additionally, those 65 and older currently hold a higher rate of suicide compared to younger age groups.
6. List four possible reasons for the observed decrease in suicide rates.
*Healthy life expectancy
*Decline in substance abuse
*Declined homicide rates
7. Recent media reports have suggested that medications may provoke suicidal behavior, particularly in adolescents. As a precautionary step, the FDA issued a public health advisory warning doctors to watch patients closely for worsening depression when medication is first prescribed. What does the data show about the effects of...