Suicide rates in almost every US state rose from 1999 to 2016, with increases of more than 30 percent in half of the states, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a report released Thursday.
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The report comes as the deaths of fashion designer Kate Spade and chef, writer and TV personality Anthony Bourdain this week, both of apparent suicide, have thrust the issue into the national spotlight. "She was actively seeking help and working closely with her doctors to treat her disease", he wrote.
If you have thoughts of suicide, confidential help is available for free at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
Vermont also has a high rate of binge drinking, and evidence suggests that people who drink too much are at higher risk of suicide.
The CDC says that more than 45,000 Americans age 10 and older dying by suicide in 2016.
Between 1999 and 2016, suicide rates increased more than 25%, across age, gender, race and ethnicity.
In Oregon, two people on average lose their lives to suicide each day, making self-harm one of the leading causes of death.
Prevention efforts, often focused on mental health, could be broadened to focus on people undergoing life stresses like job losses or divorces, the CDC's Dr. Anne Schuchat said in a media briefing.
Oregon's rate climbed to 17.8 suicide deaths per 100,000. Nevada, the outlier, had a slight decrease of 1 percent in its suicide rate.
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She said she found it interesting in a tragic way that of those who committed suicide without a known mental-health problem, 55 percent died by firearm.
Although there is no single cause for suicide, information from coroners' reports suggests numerous deaths followed relationship problems, substance use, and financial crises, according to the CDC.
The report said people without known mental health problems were more likely to die by firearms than those with known mental health problems.
That said, there's not typically one "cause" of suicide.
Although suicide is often attributed exclusively to mental health conditions, it is rarely caused by a single factor, the researchers said.
The CDC report, which was released this week, did not give a reason for the uptick in suicides.
Effective strategies, she said, included teaching coping and problem-solving skills for those at risk, establishing more social "connectedness", as well as safe storage of pills and guns. "Suicide is a public health problem that can be prevented".
Tens of thousands of Americans die by suicide each year.
The CDC says there were a higher number of suicides in areas hard hit by the economic downturn, especially in rural areas in western states. That ranked 16 highest in the country, trailing most of the Rocky Mountain west, where rates are highest.
Overall, the rate rose to 15.4 per 100,000 in 2014-2016 from 12.3 per 100,000 in 1999-2001.