What is the increase in suicide rates?


There has been a notable increase in suicide rates in the United States over recent years. From around 2000 to the present, suicide mortality in the U.S. has risen by approximately 30%. This is in contrast to a global decrease of about 18% in western nations during the same period. Interestingly, during the pandemic, there was a slight decrease in these numbers, although it is unclear if this trend will be sustained 1.

Additionally, serious increases in suicide rates have been noted among specific demographic groups in the U.S. For instance, from 1999 to 2014, the overall suicide rate climbed by 24%, with particularly high increases among middle-aged white Americans and young white males. The suicide rate for white kids jumped by 70% between 2006 and 2016 2.

Moreover, youth suicide rates have become a significant concern. For example, hospital admissions for suicidal thoughts and actions more than doubled among young individuals from 5 to 17 years old between 2008 and 2015 3. These trends highlight a pressing mental health crisis affecting various age groups across the nation.

Rising Suicide Rates

Explore the alarming rise in suicide rates in the United States compared to other countries, with insights from Thomas on the exceptionalism of the US and the recent slight decrease in numbers during the pandemic.

The Ezra Klein Show

A Top Mental Health Expert on Where America Went Wrong