National Alliance on Mental Illness
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Youth Suicides Increase

September 7, 2007

NAMI Medical Director Ken Duckworth this week issued a formal statement commenting on two major studies on the unprecedented increase in suicides among children and adolescents.

The Washington Post reports that a new study, led by a researcher at the University of Chicago, has found that an unprecedented increase in the number youth suicides corresponds with a decrease in adolescent anti-depressants—which may be the unintended result of FDA “black box” warnings.

The Washington Post cites a second study, conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which documents a 67% increase in the suicide rate of 10- to 14-year-old American girls.

The CDC is advising health officials to consider focusing suicide prevention programs to pre-teens and teenagers in an effort to reverse the trends.

Additional Resources:

Suicide in Youth Fact Sheet  (June 2003)

Suicide Prevention Guides for Physicians, Families and Attempt Survivors  (November 2005)