A new study has found that in the years between 2008 and 2015, the number of teenagers who have been hospitalized for suicide ideation and suicide attempts have almost doubled. The largest increase in such hospitalizations has been seen in female teenagers.
The study was published in Pediatrics, and its lead author was Greg Plemmons, MD. Plemmons works at Monroe Carrell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt as an associate professor of Clinical Pediatrics.
The few studies about teen suicide suggest a lot of interesting things. First off, it seems that teen suicides happen more often in the Fall and Spring seasons. This coincides with crucial times in the school year, as well as the weather being cold and/or becoming colder. It’s interesting to note that adult suicides peak in the summertime—opposite of when teen suicides peak.
Studies like this are very important to look at, considering the fact that suicide makes up the third most prevalent cause of death for people in their adolescent years. The study did not state any particular reason for why teen suicide and suicide ideation events have increased, but the lead author, Greg Plemmons, states that various factors such as social media, cyberbullying and the stress of academics could be causing it.
Last year, Netflix released season 2 of “13 Reasons Why,” a television series that revolved around the suicide of a girl. This show has drummed up controversy with some people who say that it glorifies suicide. This is not the first time that people have said things like this about things that have popped up in the mainstream media. For many years, people have been accusing various forms of media of glorifying suicide. One of the most memorable things that people accused of glorifying suicide was the “emo” subculture and everything associated with it. Music with lyrics that seemed to revel in misery were accused of being “emo” and encouraging suicidal behaviors. Bands like Fall Out Boy were having fingers pointed their way.
There is the argument that, for years, there has been a romanticization of suicide in youth and popular culture. The fact that there is a lot of talk about suicide and romanticism of not doing it, or talking people out of doing it, may exacerbate the problem in some ways.
People are very open to suggestion, and when they see other people killing themselves, or hear talk about suicide, it may prompt them to commit suicide.