U.S. Suicide Rate Highest in 30 Years

The suicide rate in the United States has risen sharply to the highest levels in almost 30 years, particularly among women and middle-age Americans, according to federal data released Friday. The suicide rate for women ages 45-64 increased by 63 percent from 1994 to 2014, while it jumped 43 percent for men in the same age range, according to a National Center for Health Statistics study. The overall suicide rate climbed 24 percent during the period of the study. In fact, there were so many increases in every age group that it raised the nation’s suicide rate to its highest since 1986: 13 per 100,000 people. Researchers found 42,773 people took their own lives in 2014, compared with 29,199 in 1999. According to the study, the suicide rate for girls ages 10 to 14, which is still low, also tripled to 150 in 2014 from 50 in 1999. Economic distress, more drug addiction, increased social isolation, and the rise of the Internet and social media may have contributed to the higher rate, the study says.