Suicide in the elderly and youth population: How do they differ?
This presentation profiles the main characteristics of elderly and youth suicidal behaviours, both fatal and non-fatal. Evidences from epidemiological and psychological autopsy studies have helped in identifying characteristics that differ in many regards, and overall at the psychopathological level. Depression exerts a much more important role in elderly suicide than in younger population's fatal behaviour. Despite being circa equally distributed in men and women, mood disorders carry a disproportionately higher mortality due to suicide in men, especially in the very old. Gender issues will then be examined, providing evidence on the different coping skills of the two sexes, also through indirect evidence deriving from recent suicide prevention activities. The presentation will also deal with the description of non-fatal suicidal behaviour, including repetition of attempts, and examination of different impact of death/suicide ideation in diverse age groups. Data deriving from the WHO/SUPRE-MISS, the WHO/EURO Multi-Centre Study of Suicidal Behaviour, and Queensland Suicide Register will corroborate the discussion.