Youth Suicide Prevention

Generally, youth suicide is when a young person takes their own life, usually under the legal age of majority. This is an extremely high rate in Western societies. Fortunately, there are several ways in which society can help prevent suicide.


Across the United States, youth suicide continues to be a serious problem. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, youth suicides are the second leading cause of death for 15 to 19-year-olds.

The National Strategy for Suicide Prevention focuses on addressing suicides and lethal means, countering stigma, and increasing public support. It also outlines ways to increase public dialogue about suicide. It also includes coordinating efforts to address behavioral health.

In 2011, suicide outranked homicide as the second leading cause of death for 15- to 19-year-olds. Several studies have shown that depression and suicidal thoughts increase during adolescence. In addition, substance use is linked to one in three youth suicides.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, one in three high school students had poor mental health. The highest incidence of poor mental health occurred among gay, lesbian, and bisexual students.

Family cohesion

Various studies have investigated the relationship between family cohesion and suicidal ideation. Some of these studies examined parents and children together, while others investigated parental marital status. The findings are mixed. Some studies cite a number of other common risk factors, while others do not.

Some studies found a positive relationship between family cohesion and suicide ideation, while others found a negative association. The relationship between family cohesion and suicide ideation is a complex matter. The findings suggest that increasing family cohesion may be a target treatment for adolescents with a suicide attempt.

The study also examined the moderating effect of self-compassion. Self-compassion significantly moderated the association between Wave 1 SI and later SA. It also thwarted the transition from SI to SA.

The study found that adolescents who had a positive relationship with parents were less likely to have a suicide ideation. These results are in accordance with the concept of familial cohesion, which emphasizes the subordinating of needs to family.

COVID-19 pandemic

During the COVID-19 pandemic, adolescents faced a variety of stressors and mental health concerns. In addition, the effects of the pandemic may be more intense for children and teens in low-income communities. These stressors include the effects of a family’s economic hardship and loss of caregivers, social isolation, and the lack of social interaction.

Researchers in 14 states found that there was a significant increase in suicide attempts and related suicidal thoughts among adolescents. This study examined data from both before and after the pandemic. In particular, it was found that in the first half of 2021, 38 children’s hospitals reported a more than 182% increase in the number of suicide attempts among 9- to 12-year-olds.

The study also found that the number of suspected suicide attempts among adolescents increased by about 31 percent. Furthermore, the proportion of visits to the emergency room for suspected suicide attempts by girls increased by 50 percent.

Positive life events

Considering that suicide is the leading cause of death among school-age youth, there is a need to develop youth suicide prevention through positive life events. Among adolescents, suicidal ideation is a precursor to suicidal behavior. These early psychological initializations of suicide can lead to a number of complications. By improving the understanding of suicidal ideation, youth can be identified at risk and intervention can be targeted.

Several factors have been shown to increase the risk of suicidal ideation. These include mental health conditions and behavioral problems. In addition, there is a need to develop a school environment that is conducive to adolescent resilience. This can be achieved by developing a positive school climate.

A positive school climate can help develop a caring community among students. Schools can also reduce the vulnerability of youth to suicide.


During the past decade, youth suicide rates have increased significantly in the United States. Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in children and adolescents. However, suicide risk factors in children are not fully understood. In this study, researchers evaluated the association between genetic factors and suicidal thoughts and behaviors in children. The findings of the study may help reduce the risk of suicide.

The study included 11,878 US children in early elementary school. The data included genome-wide genetic data and youth reports of suicide attempts. The study also assessed the youth report of the Kiddie Schedule for Affective Disorders (KDSAD).

The data were analyzed for three years. The results showed that common genetic variants associated with increased risk of SAs in adults were associated with SAs in children. These polygenic risk scores (PRSs) were commonly associated with lifetime SAs in children of European ancestry.