2022 Sets New Record For Suicide In US

New preliminary data from the CDC shows that the spike in suicide rates in the United States started in 2021 and continued into 2022, reaching an all-time high. The national suicide rate increased by 1% in 2022, reaching 14.3 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants.

The figures show a still-growing issue with no apparent cause, even if the increase is far less than the 4% spike from 2020 to 2021. The number of suicides in 2022 is expected to be more significant once more death certificates are processed, as provisional data is inadequate.

The surge was greatest among females older than 24, as shown by preliminary United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention statistics. After over 48,200 fatalities in 2021, the overall number of suicides in 2022 was approximately 49,500, an increase of 3%. Researchers from the CDC report that this will result in “the greatest number ever recorded in the United States” for the suicide death toll in 2022.

The research did not specify why, but it seemed that the increase in suicides was disproportionately affecting middle-aged and older women. Male suicide rates remain much higher than female suicide rates in absolute terms: There were 39,255 men and 10,194 females who committed suicide. In contrast to males, women had a far sharper rise in suicide rates in 2022 (4% vs. 1%).

The increase in 2022 was most pronounced among women aged 25 and above. Suicide rates among female teenagers and younger women declined, while among women aged 25–34, they increased by 7%. Suicide rates increased by 2% to 9% among women aged 35 and above as well.

The study, released on November 29th by the National Center for Health Statistics, included positive information on young Americans. Researchers found that suicide rates decreased from 2021 to 2022 across all age categories, but especially among men and girls aged 10–34 and 10–24, respectively. Suicide rates have “risen nearly constantly over the 21st century, with increases reported for both men and girls” and have increased across all age groups and racial and ethnic categories.

To better connect Americans experiencing mental health crises with rapid assistance, the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline was established in 2021, and a national policy for suicide prevention was announced by the U.S. Surgeon General in 2021.