A suicide occurs every 40 seconds

The World Health Organization (WHO) has released a report finding that a suicide occurs in the world every 40 seconds. The international agency says suicide should be classified as a  “major public health problem.”

Based on of 10 years of research on data from around the world, WHO estimates around 800,000 people commit suicide each year and that it is the second leading cause of death in people ages 15 to 29. Three-quarters of these reported deaths occurred in low and middle income countries. In wealthier nations, men die by suicide three times more often than women.

One thing that has helped reduce the rate of suicide was limiting access to firearms and toxic chemicals, according to WHO, which set a goal for decreasing the suicide rate by 10 percent by 2020. It noted that only 28 countries currently have a national suicide prevention strategy.

One of the main problems with addressing suicide is the stigma attached to it, researchers noted. WHO says countries need to be more supportive of people who previously attempted suicide or who may be at risk. WHO also disagreed with how suicide is covered by the media.  Stigma is one of the biggest obstacles to preventing suicide because people may not reach out for help.

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Sourced from: bbc.com, A death by suicide every 40 seconds, says WHO