Who Is At Risk for Suicide?


Unemployed

A longitudinal study presented in the British Medical Journal shows a correlation between suicide, unemployment and chronic illness. The study found that “there was a strong independent association between suicide and individuals who were unemployed…and permanently sick…Those without access to a car had an increased risk.” The conclusion reported from the study shows “the association between suicide and unemployment is more important than the association with other socio-economic measures.” It is believed then that “social and economic policies that reduce unemployment will also reduce the rate of suicide.” [SOURCE: 11/7/98 – British Medical Journal]

Gamblers

A study published this week in the journal Suicide and Threatening Behavior by a University of California, San Diego, sociologist has suggested a significant link between legalized gambling and the suicide rate. The study focused on three cities: Las Vegas and Reno, Nev., and Atlantic City, N.J. It found that each had a significantly higher suicide rate than cities of similar size. Of particular interest was Atlantic City, which before the introduction of legalized gambling in 1978 had a suicide rate in line with other cities of its size, but whose suicide rate is now 43 percent greater than similar cities. The study further noted that visitors to these cities also commit suicide at a higher-than-to-be-expected rate, with Las Vegas leading the group with 1 in 25 visitors committing suicide, four times the national average. [SOURCE: 12/19/97 – Church & State Update]

Those who had a violent birth

People who begin life with a traumatic and painful birth are more likely to end their own lives violently. Swedish researches studied adult suicides and found that how people are born may be linked to how they choose to die. Breech births, use of forceps and/or suction were all associated with an increased risk of violent suicide for adult males. Infant pain was also an important factor. [SOURCE: 11/13/98 – Reuters]


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