Adolescent Suicide Rates Between 1990 and 2009: Analysis of Age Group 15-19 Years Worldwide
Purpose The aim of the current analysis is to analyze suicide rates in adolescents aged 15–19 years in decades between 1990 and 2009 worldwide. Methods Suicide data were obtained from the World Health Organization Mortality Database and population data from the World Bank Data set. In total, 81 countries or territories, having data at least for 5 years in 1990–1999 and in 2000–2009, were included in the analysis. Additional analysis for regional trends with 57 countries was performed. Results Over the decades considered, analysis showed a declining trend in the overall suicide rate for males from 10.30 to 9.51 per 100,000 (p = .076), and for females from 4.39 to 4.18 (p = .472). The average suicide rate showed a significant decline for both genders in Europe, dropping from 13.13 to 10.93 (p = .001) in males and from 3.88 to 3.34 in females (p = .038). There was a significant increase in South American countries for males, from 7.36 to 11.47 (p = .016), and a close to significant rise for females, from 5.59 to 7.98 (p = .053). Although other world regions did not show significant trends, there were several significant changes at country level. Conclusions Reasons behind the decrease in Western countries could potentially be related to the overall improvements in global health; the possible contribution of suicide prevention activities remains unclear. Increases in several South American countries might be related to economic recession and its impact on adolescents from diverse cultural backgrounds, and partly also to improvements in mortality registration.
Journal of Adolescent Health
Psychology and Cognitive Sciences not elsewhere classified