The National Center for Health Statistics recently published a study indicating that the suicide rates in the U.S. have increased by 30% (males and females combined) between the years 2000 and 2016. The suicide rate during that time increased for males by 21% and for females by 50%.
Suicide rates for males progressively got higher for each age group. The rate for males in 2016 ages 15-74 years ranged from 20.5/100,000 (15-24 year olds) to 29.1/100,000 (45-64 year olds). The highest rate (39.2/100,000) was for men older than 74 years.
Compared to males, women had significantly fewer suicides per 100,000. Rates for females in 2016 increased by for each age group until the 45-64 age group and then declined. The rate of suicide for females ages 15-74 years ranged from 5.4/100,000 (15-24 year olds) to 9.9/100,000 (45-64 year olds). The rate for women older than 74 years was 4.2/100,000.
One of the most outstanding statistic of the study was that the rate of suicide for men over the age of 74 years was nearly 10 times higher than for women over 74 years old. The ratio of male-to-female suicide rates for 2016 was 3.6.
Use of firearms followed by suffocation were the most frequently methods of suicide. Fifty-four per cent had no know mental health condition. Suicide remains a major cause of death in the U.S. with about 45,000 deaths in 2016. It is the second leading cause of death for the age group 15-19 years.