Suicide claimed the lives of almost 46,000 people in the United States in 2020*. It is the second leading cause of death for children aged 10–14 and adults aged 35–44, and the third leading cause of death for young people aged 15–24.1 From 2004 to 2020, the prevalence of depression among children has increased by 89%. The prevalence of mental health conditions among adults has increased by 19% from 2008 to 2020. Of individuals aged 12 or older in 2020, 14.5% had a substance use disorder condition. Of those with a substance use disorder condition, 25% die by suicide.
Individuals can and do recover from mental health and substance use disorder conditions and anything that may be contributing to suicidal thoughts, going on to live happy, vibrant lives.
If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health or substance use crisis, call or text 988, or chat (988lifeline.org), 24/7 with the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline for free and confidential support.
These are only a few of the reasons why it’s important to take part in promoting Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. Please use these facts to encourage discussions with your community through social media or other forms of outreach.
- 79% of all people who die by suicide are male.
- Although more women than men attempt suicide, men are 4x more likely to die by suicide.
- Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among people aged 10–14 and the 3rd leading cause of death among people aged 15-24 in the U.S.
- Suicide is the 12th leading cause of death overall in the U.S.
- 46% of people who die by suicide had a diagnosed mental health condition – but research shows that 90% may have experienced symptoms of a mental health condition.
- Annual prevalence of serious thoughts of suicide, by U.S. demographic group:
- 4.9% of all adults
- 11.3% of young adults aged 18-25
- 18.8% of high school students
- 45% of LGBTQ youth
- The highest rates of suicide in the U.S. are among American Indian/Alaska Natives followed by non-Hispanic whites.
- Lesbian, gay, and bisexual youth are nearly 4x more likely to attempt suicide than straight youth.
- Transgender adults are nearly 9x more likely to attempt suicide than the general population.
- Suicide is the leading cause of death for people held in local jails.
*Data shared is from the Centers for Disease Control, National Institute of Mental Health, and National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)