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Suicide Rates Hit Highest Level Ever in 2022

Suicide Rates Hit Highest Level Ever in 2022

Dec. 1, 2023
The rate of suicides per 100,000 increased from 14.1 in 2021 to 14.3 in 2022, the highest since 1941.

A new report from the CDC released on November 29 showed that  number of suicides was 3% higher in 2022, increasing from 48,183 in 2021 to 49,449, the highest number ever recorded in the US.

The previous all-time high was 48,344 in 2018.

The rate of suicides per 100,000 increased from 14.1 in 2021 to 14.3 in 2022, the highest since 1941.

Other findings documented in this report:

  • The percentage increase in the number of suicides was greater for females (4%) than males (2%), but the provisional 2022 suicide number for males (39,255) was nearly four times that of females (10,194).
  • The age-adjusted suicide rate was 1% higher in 2022 than 2021 for males (23.1 deaths per 100,000 compared with 22.8) and 4% higher for females (5.9 compared with 5.7).
  • Rates increased for all age groups 35 and older from 2021 to 2022. These increases ranged from 3% in ages 35–44 and ages 65–74 to 9% in ages 55–64.

To help lower the situation, the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration launched the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline in 2022. Since then, 988 has received about 7 million calls, texts, and chats including more than 500,000 in September alone, according to federal data.

However, there is a question of how well known this number is. Research in the JAMA Network Open, showed that only 25% of people said that they would be very likely to turn to 988 in the future if they or a loved one were experiencing mental health crisis or were considering suicide. The report also noted t hat more than 33% of people with psychological distress who had already tired the number were likely to use it again.

“Launching the 988 hotline has been a critical step for addressing America’s expanding need for mental health services, but we have to get to the bottom of why so many users who were in serious distress wouldn’t use it again — whether that means better training is needed, more resources or other solutions,” said Michael A. Lindsey, dean of the New York University Silver School of Social Work and co-author of the new study, in an article on CNN Health.

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