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800,000 People commit Suicide Worldwide, several attempt suicide Yearly - WHO

It has been estimated by World Health Organisation, WHO, that every year, close to 800 000 people take their own lives and that there are many more people who attempt suicide.

The body said every suicide is a tragedy that affects families, communities and entire countries and has long-lasting effects on the people left behind, adding that suicide occurs throughout the lifespan and was the second leading cause of death among 15–29-year-old globally in 2015.

The body said suicide does not just occur in high-income countries, but is a global phenomenon in all regions of the world and that over 78% of global suicides occurred in low- and middle-income countries in 2015.

“Suicide is a serious public health problem; however, suicides are preventable with timely, evidence-based and often low-cost interventions. For national responses to be effective, a comprehensive multisectoral suicide prevention strategy is needed,” it said on its website.

It said while the link between suicide and mental disorders (in particular, depression and alcohol use disorders) is well established in high-income countries, many suicides happen impulsively in moments of crisis with a breakdown in the ability to deal with life stresses, such as financial problems, relationship break-up or chronic pain and illness.

“In addition, experiencing conflict, disaster, violence, abuse, or loss and a sense of isolation are strongly associated with suicidal behaviour. Suicide rates are also high amongst vulnerable groups who experience discrimination, such as refugees and migrants; indigenous peoples; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex (LGBTI) persons; and prisoners. By far the strongest risk factor for suicide is a previous suicide attempt.

“It is estimated that around 30% of global suicides are due to pesticide self-poisoning, most of which occur in rural agricultural areas in low- and middle-income countries. Other common methods of suicide are hanging and firearms.

“Knowledge of the most commonly used suicide methods is important to devise prevention strategies which have shown to be effective, such as restriction of access to means of suicide,’ it said.

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