More Children Ending Up In Hospitals For Suicidal Tendencies

Maricruz Casares
May 16, 2018

A new study finding a rise in suicidal thoughts and attempts among young people adds to the research pointing to a decline in mental health among USA children and adolescents.

It reveals that the number of hospitalization has increased to more than twice the number in 2008. The study showed the proportion of young people treated at 31 US children's hospitals for suicidal thoughts or attempts more than doubled between 2008 and 2015, from 0.66% of all visits to 1.82% of all visits.

Suicide is now known to be the third leading cause of death among adolescents in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 41,149 suicides occurred in the country in 2013 at a rate of 12.6 per 100,000 people.

Just over half of the encounters were children ages 15-17; another 37 percent were children ages 12-14, and 12.8 percent were children ages 5-11.

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In the new study published in the journal Pediatrics on May 16, researchers from the Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Tennessee examined data collected from the Pediatric Health Information System or PHIS.

The study indicates that children between the age group of 5 to 17 years made about two visits to the hospital for having suicidal thoughts and also attempts over the past decade, significantly from 2008 to 2015. While increments were seen overall age gatherings, they were most noteworthy among adolescents ages 15-17, trailed by ages 12-14. Rates were higher during the school year than in the summer, and almost two-thirds of the visits involved girls, according to results published in the medical journal Pediatrics.

Study lead author Greg Plemmons, MD, associate professor of Clinical Pediatrics at Monroe Carell Jr. It suggests that the youth may face increased stress and mental health challenges when school is in session. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt.

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