THURSDAY, March 3, 2022 (HealthDay News) — Suicide mortality increased from 2000 to 2018, then decreased from 2018 to 2020, according to a February data brief published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Health Statistics.

Matthew F. Garnett, M.P.H., from the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Maryland, and colleagues used mortality data from the National Vital Statistics System to describe the final suicide rates from 2000 to 2020.

The researchers found that the age-adjusted suicide rate decreased from 2018 to 2020 (14.2 to 13.5 per 100,000) after increasing from 2000 to 2018. For females, suicide rates showed recent declines in all age groups older than 25 years, while increases continued for those aged 10 to 14 and 15 to 24 years. In males aged 45 to 64 and 65 to 75 years, the suicide rates decreased between 2018 and 2020. The rate of firearm-related suicide was higher than rates of suicide by poisoning and suffocation (1.8 versus 1.5 and 1.7, respectively) for females in 2020. The leading means of suicide for males in 2020 was firearm, and the rate was twice that of the next leading means, suffocation (12.5 versus 6.1).

“Suicide rates were three to four times higher for males compared with females across the period, with both groups having lower rates in 2020 compared with 2018 and 2019,” the authors write.

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