Race may play role in kids’ suicide risk


MONDAY, May 21, 2018 — It’s typically assumed that suicide is extra frequent amongst white youngsters in the United States than their black friends. But that is not the case amongst 5- to 12-year-olds, new analysis exhibits.

Black kids in that younger age group are about twice as prone to take their very own lives as whites, the researchers discovered.

For older youngsters, the image reverses: Black teenagers, aged 13 to 17, are half as prone to die by suicide as equally aged white youngsters, the examine authors mentioned.

“Our findings provide further evidence of a significant age-related racial disparity in childhood suicide rates, and rebut the long-held perception that suicide rates are uniformly higher in whites than blacks in the United States,” mentioned lead creator Jeff Bridge. He’s director of the Center for Suicide Prevention and Research at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, in Columbus, Ohio.

The age-related racial distinction in suicide charges didn’t change through the 15-year examine interval, suggesting it is not defined by the Great Recession, Bridge and his colleagues famous.

For the examine, the investigators analyzed knowledge from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to establish youth suicides from 2001 to 2015.

Among youngsters aged 5 to 17, about 1,660 black kids took their very own lives, versus 13,300 whites, the findings confirmed.

Overall, the suicide price was about 42 % decrease amongst black kids. But the findings grew to become extra nuanced when the examine staff dug into particular age teams.

“The existing literature does not adequately describe the extent of age-related racial disparities in youth suicide, and understanding these differences is essential to creating targeted prevention efforts,” Bridge mentioned in a hospital information launch.

The examine can’t pinpoint why these obvious age variations exist. Bridge mentioned future research ought to take a look at whether or not risk and protecting elements related to white teen suicides are associated to suicide in black youth.

It’s additionally key, he added, to learn the way these elements change all through childhood and adolescence.

The findings had been printed in the May 21 problem of JAMA Pediatrics.

More info

There’s extra on suicide risk and youngsters on the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.

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