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  • Writer's pictureDan Criswell, MD, FASAM

Suicide Prevention

For the year of 2020, suicide was the 12th leading cause of death in the United States. 45,979 Americans died by suicide. 1.2 million people attempted suicide. The rate of suicide is highest in middle-aged white men. On average men are more the 3.8 times more likely to die by suicide than women. However the rate is increasing among females, Native Americans and Alaska Natives, Blacks, LGBTQ and Hispanics. On average, there are 130 suicides per day in the United States. White males accounted for 69.68% of the suicide deaths in 2020 and firearm's accounted for 52.83% of all suicide deaths.

Suicide rates are highest among adults older than 85 years old (20.86/100,000).

Next is 75-84 years (18.43/100,000) and 25-34 years (18.34/100,000).

  • Oklahoma has the eighth highest suicide rate in the US (20.5/100,000)

  • The highest is Wyoming (29.3/100,000).

  • The lowest is New Jersey (8/100,000).

Importantly, about half of all people who die by suicide interact with the health care system within a month of their death which gives health care providers an opportunity to screen for suicide risk. And it has been shown that screening for suicide risk can help to reduce death from suicide and connect people to both treatment and to the new 988 hotline call number.

Dan Criswell, MD Duncan Behavioral Health

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