Suicide second most common cause of death for 15-19 year old Europeans – UNICEF

Suicide second most common cause of death for 15-19 year old Europeans - UNICEF
Photo: Dan Meyers - Unsplash

November 20th will mark the World Day of Children and Adolescents, which this year has dedicated the theme to that of mental and psychosocial health. With this date in mind, Unicef has published a report which has included some shocking statistics. 

According to the report, an adolescent commits suicide somewhere in the world every 11 minutes. In total this represents a figure of 46,000 young people who take their own lives every year. In fact, globally, suicide is the fifth most common cause of death among young people between 15 and 19 years old, and the second most common in Europe. 

The data collected by Unicef, and reported on by Italian broadcaster RaiNews also reveals the widespread existence of mental health issues among young people. In a survey, 50% of young people questioned said that they feel sad, worried or anxious. Studies have shown that nearly half of all mental health issues begin by the age of 14 and 75% have developed by the age of 24. 

Yet many young people feel that they do not receive enough information about the problem, with 34% saying they’d like more information from institutions, 31% saying they’d like more from schools. This is a big difference from the just 7% that would like more information from family members. The study has also shown that the pandemic has had a significant impact on worsening mental health problems among young people. 

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