How Big Is the Problem?

Did you know that over 33,000 people in the United States die by suicide every year? Or that for every two homicides, there are three suicides?

Did you know that a young adult kills himself or herself every 2 hours and 12 minutes? Or that there are more than 1,000 suicides on college campuses per year?

Did you know that there are four male suicides for every female suicide, but twice as many females as males attempt suicide?

Did you know that in Vermont, suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death for youth aged 11-23, and accidental injury is first?

Did you know that in the past year 22% of Vermont middle school students struggled with severe depression and 8.5% of high school students attempted suicide?

You also might want to consider that each suicide death intimately and profoundly affects at least six people.

In fact, more years of life are lost to suicide than to any other single cause except heart disease and cancer.

Years of potential life lost to suicide deaths each year: 972,264.

People of all ages, races, faiths and cultures die by suicide, as do individuals from all walks of life and all income levels. Suicidal youth come from all kinds of families, two-parent and single-parent, rich and poor, happy and sad.

Internationally, about one million people die by suicide each year—more than by war and homicide combined.

People who have tried to kill themselves in the past are still at risk. Four out of five persons who die by suicide have made at least one previous attempt.

Studies show that while it may be triggered by a single event, a suicide attempt by a young person can be based on problems that have existed for a long time. Usually the “final straw” is not the cause of the suicide.

Four out of five teens who attempt suicide have given some sign of their intentions. Sadly the people around them are often unaware of the significance of these warnings or unsure what to do about them. Get to know the warning signs. And take them seriously.

For every death by suicide, there are 25 attempts.

When suicidal threats are not taken seriously, the person may conclude that nobody cares.

Most people who attempt suicide don’t want to die, they just want the pain to stop.