Suicide Attempts

Teen suicide attempts demand a proactive response to safeguard lives. Failed suicide attempts leave behind emotional trauma that requires professional support.

What Are Suicide Attempts?

The Centers for Disease Control define a suicide attempt as a non-fatal, potentially injurious behavior that is self-directed, with the original intent to bring about death. Although a suicide attempt might not result in injury, attempted suicide is a critically dangerous event. Such self-inflicted attempts by people to kill themselves are labeled “suicide attempts” or “suicidal gestures” by mental health professionals. This definition is consistent no matter how ineffective an attempted suicide may be.

Every 40 seconds, someone ends their life, somewhere in the world. However, there are a great many more suicide attempts than deaths by suicide. The majority of attempts go unreported because of stigma and shame.

Some people plan suicide attempts, while others are impulsive. The latest studies estimate that, for every completed suicide, there likely are between 20 and 25 suicide attempts. This number is even higher for young people between the ages of 15 to 24. In this category, experts estimate there may be as many as 200 people who survive an attempted suicide for every completed suicide.

Finding qualified treatment options after suicide attempts is essential. Any failed suicide attempt, no matter the severity, necessitates medical help to safeguard the life of the individual from future self-harm.

Sources: Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Medline Plus, eMedicine Health

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