Suicide rates for teen girls hits 40-year high

The suicide rate for females aged 15 to 19 years reached a 40-year high in 2015, according to data published by the CDC in last week's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

For the report, researchers examined data on suicide rates from 1975 through 2015 compiled by the National Center for Health Statistics. Analysis revealed the suicide rate for teenage males increased from 12 per 100,000 people in 1975 to 18.1 per 100,000 people in 1990. The suicide rate among teenage boys dropped to 10.8 per 100,000 people by 2007 before jumping up again to 14.2 per 100,000 by 2015.

Among teenage females, the suicide rate increased from 2.9 per 100,000 in 1975 to 3.7 per 100,000 in 1990. This figure dropped to 2.4 per 100,000 in 2007 and then surged to 5.1 per 100,000 in 2015.

"We know that overall in the U.S., we're seeing increases in suicide rates across all age group," said Tom Simon, PhD, one of the report's authors and associate director for science in the division of violence protection at the CDC, according to CNN. "We're not seeing the same kind of increases among the oldest adults, but we are seeing substantial and sustained increases now for the other age groups really going back to 2015 … The message for parents, teachers, coaches and religious leaders is to not be afraid to talk to a young person when they are concerned."

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