World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD) is an awareness day observed annually on 10 September, in order to provide worldwide commitment and action to prevent suicides via the organisation of global, regional and national multi-sectoral activities to increase awareness about suicidal behaviours and how to effectively prevent them. The International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) collaborates with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Federation for Mental Health (WFMH) to host World Suicide Prevention Day. In 2011 an estimated 40 countries held awareness events to mark the occasion. According to WHO’s Mental health Atlas released in 2014, no low-income country reported having a national suicide prevention strategy, while less than 10% of lower-middle income countries, and almost a third of upper-middle and high-income countries had.
An estimated one million people per year die by suicide or about one person in 10,000 (1.4% of all deaths), or about 3,000 every day”. As of 2004 the number of people who die by suicide is expected to reach 1.5 million per year by 2020. On average, three male suicides are reported for every female one, across different age groups and in almost every country in the world. “Conversely, rates of suicide attempts tend to be 2-3 times higher in women than in men, although the gender gap has narrowed in recent years.” More people die from suicide than from murder and war; it is the 13th leading cause of death worldwide. According to WHO there are twenty people who have a failed suicide attempt for every one that is successful, at a rate approximately one every three seconds. Suicide is the “most common cause of death for people aged 15 – 24. According to WHO, suicide accounts for nearly half of all violent deaths in the world. Brian Mishara, IASP president, noted that, more people kill themselves than die in all wars, terrorist acts and interpersonal violence combined. As of 2008, the WHO refers the widest number of suicides occur in the age group 15 – 29, while the lowest in the 80+ although representing as well the one with the highest rate (per 100,000) of all age groups, with 27.8 suicides and 60.1 for females and males respectively. Social norms play a significant role in the development of suicidal behaviors. Late 19th century’s sociological studies recorded first ever observations on suicide: with statistics of the time at hand, sociologists mentioned the effects of industrialization as in relations between new urbanized communities and vulnerability to self-destructive behavior, suggesting social pressures have effects on suicide. Today, differences in suicidal behavior among different countries can show significant. Suicide prevention’s priorities, as declared on the 2012 World Suicide Prevention Day event, are stated below:
The need to continue to research suicide and non-fatal suicidal behaviour, addressing both risk and protective factors.
The need to develop and implement awareness campaigns, with the aim of increasing awareness of suicidal behaviours in the community, incorporating evidence on both risk and protective factors.
The need to target our efforts not only to reduce risk factors but also to strengthen protective factor, especially in childhood and adolescence.
The need to train health care professionals to better understand evidence-based risk and protective factors associated with suicidal behaviour.
The need to combine primary, secondary and tertiary prevention.
The need to increase use of and adherence to treatments shown to be effective in treating diverse conditions; and to prioritise research into effectiveness of treatments aimed at reducing self-harm and suicide risk.
The need to increase the availability of mental health resources and to reduce barriers to accessing care.
The need to disseminate research evidence about suicide prevention to policy makers at international, national and local levels.
The need to reduce stigma and promote mental health literacy among the general population and health care professionals.
The need to reach people who don’t seek help, and hence don’t receive treatment when they are in need of it.
The need to ensure sustained funding for suicide research and prevention.
The need to influence governments to develop suicide prevention strategies for all countries and to support the implementation of those strategies that have been demonstrated to save lives.
In much of the world, suicide is stigmatized and condemned for religious or cultural reasons. In some countries, suicidal behavior is a criminal offence punishable by law. Suicide is therefore often a secretive act surrounded by taboo, and may be unrecognized, misclassified or deliberately hidden in official records of death. Stigma, particularly surrounding mental disorders and suicide, means many people thinking of taking their own life or who have attempted suicide are not seeking help and are therefore not getting the help they need. The prevention of suicide has not been adequately addressed due to a lack of awareness of suicide as a major public health problem and the taboo in many societies to openly discuss it. Raising community awareness and breaking down the taboo is important for countries to make progress in preventing suicide.” In richer countries, three times as many men die of suicide than women do, but in low- and middle-income countries the male-to-female ratio is much lower at 1.5 men to each woman. In the United States, males are four times more likely to die from suicide than are females. However, females are more likely to attempt suicide than are males.
Some of the Main suicide triggers are poverty, unemployment, the loss of a loved one, arguments, mental and physical health problems, legal or work-related problems, depression, financial problems, abuse, aggression, social status, exploitation and mistreatment, hopelessness, unemployment, Changing gender roles, sexual orientation, difficulties with developing one’s identity, disassociation from one’s community or other social/belief group, and honour are among the most common causes which can contribute to the feelings of pain and trigger suicidal thoughts.
In 1999, death by self-inflicted injuries was the fourth leading cause of death among aged 15–44, in the world. In a 2002 study it’s reported the countries with the lowest rates tend to be in Latin America, ‘Muslim countries and a few Asian countries’, and noted a lack of information from most African countries where incidence of suicide tends to be under-reported and misclassified due to both cultural and social pressures, and possibly completely unreported in some areas. Since data might be skewed, comparing suicide rates between nations can result in statistically unsound conclusions about suicidal behavior in different countries. Nevertheless the statistics are commonly used to directly influence decisions about public policy and public health strategies.
Of the 34 member countries of the OECD, a group of mostly high-income countries that uses market economy to improve the Human Development Index, South Korea had the highest suicide rate in 2009. In 2008 it was reported that young people 15–34 years old in China were more likely to die by suicide, especially young Chinese women in rural places because of ‘arguments about marriage’. By 2011 however, suicide rate for the same age group had been declining significantly according to official releases, mainly by late China’s urbanisation and migration from rural areas to more urbanised: since the 1990s indeed, overall national chinese suicide rate dropped by 68%. According to WHO, in 2009 the four countries with the highest rates of suicide were all in Eastern Europe; Slovenia, Russia, Latvia, and Belarus. As of 2015 the highest suicide rates are in Eastern Europe, Korea and the Siberian area bordering China, in Sri Lanka and the Guianas, Belgium and few Sub-Saharan countries. suicide is considered a major public health issue in high-income and an emerging problem in low and middle-income countries. Among high-income countries (besides South Korea) highest rates in 2015 are found in these countries, Belgium, France, Japan, Croatia, Austria, Uruguay and Finland. According to WHO’s Mental health Atlas released in 2014, no low-income country reported having a national suicide prevention strategy, while less than 10% of lower-middle income countries, and almost a third of upper-middle and high-income countries had.
Socioeconomic status plays an important role in suicidal behavior, and wealth is a constant with regards to Male–Female suicide rate ratios, being that excess male mortality by suicide is generally limited or non existent in low- and middle-income societies, whereas it is never absent in high-income countries. Suicidal behavior has been studied bybeconomists since about the 1970s: although national costs of suicide and suicide attempts are very high, suicide prevention is hampered by scarce resources for lack of interest by mental health advocates and legislators; and moreover, personal interests even financial are studied with regards to suicide attempts. In the 1990’s The United Nations issued ‘National Policy for Suicide Prevention’ which is used as a basis for their assisted suicide policies. However the UN noted that suicide bombers’ deaths are seen as secondary to their goal of killing other people or specific targets and the bombers are not otherwise typical of people committing suicide.
According to a 2006 WHO press release, one third of worldwide suicides were committed with pesticides, “some of which were forbidden by United Nations (UN) conventions.” WHO urged the highly populated Asian countries to restrict pesticides that are commonly used in failed attempts, especially organophosphate-based pesticides that are banned by international conventions but still made in and exported by some Asian countries. WHO reports an increase in pesticide suicides in other Asian countries as well as Central and South America.It is estimated that such painful failed attempts could be reduced by legalizing controlled voluntary euthanasia options, as implemented in Switzerland. As of 2017, it is estimated that around 30% of global suicides are still due to pesticide self-poisoning, most of which occur in rural agricultural areas in low- and middle-income countries (consisting in about 80% world population). In high-income countries consisting of the remaining 20% world population most common methods are firearms, hanging and other self-poisoning.
European and American societies report a higher male mortality by suicide than any other, in western countries men are about 300% more likely to die by suicide than females. suicide rates are globally higher among men than women even though women are more prone to suicidal thoughts than men. The disparity in suicide rates has been partly explained by the use of more lethal means and the experience of more aggression and higher intent to die, when suicidal, in men than women. There are many potential reasons for different suicide rates in men and women such as gender equality issues, differences in socially acceptable methods of dealing with stress and conflict for men and women, availability of and preference for different means of suicide, availability and patterns of alcohol consumption, and differences in care-seeking rates for mental disorders between men and women. However women had higher suicide rates in countries of the former Soviet Bloc and in some of Latin America. Globally. While in China women were up to 30% more likely than men to commit suicide and up to 60% in some other South Asian countries. Some suicide reduction strategies do not recognize the separate needs of males and females. Many young females are at a higher risk of attempting suicide, therefore policies tailored towards this demographic can reduce the overall rates. Researchers have also recommended aggressive long-term treatments and follow up for males that show indications of suicidal thoughts.