KUNM

Study: Teen Suicide Attempts Down 35 Percent In N.M.

Sep 10, 2015

There are fewer young people trying to commit suicide in New Mexico, according to the state Department of Health. Statewide rates of attempted suicide among school kids dropped 35 percent between 2003 and 2013.

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in America, according to the CDC. The problem is especially widespread among young people, with an average of 12 teenagers committing suicide every day across the country.

Dan Green is an epidemiologist who worked on the New Mexico report. He said even though the drop in statewide rates of youth suicide attempts is great news, researchers also found certain groups are particularly vulnerable.

"Kids who are lesbian, gay or bisexual have a suicide attempt rate that’s about four times that of kids who are straight," Green said. "Kids who have physical disabilities or learning disabilities have a suicide attempt rate that’s three or four times that of kids without disabilities."

The report also found kids who are bullied are much more likely to attempt suicide. Green said suicide prevention and education programs in schools are working to counter those trends.