Suicide is a tragic event. It has a profound personal effect on all
associated with the person who died. Families, friends and society as
a whole are affected. There is a particular poignancy when the suicide
is that of a young person at the threshold of life.
Australia has the fifth highest suicide rate per 100 000 persons in
the world. While suicide is highest among males, suicide attempts are
higher among females and youth suicide among males are highest in
rural / remote areas. 1
This essay will examine some of the issues of youth suicide. The focus
will be to view the underlying factors and the strategies employed to
intervene and prevent a potential young person from suiciding.
Multiplicity of Factors
It is apparent that suicide is now a major cause of death among young
people in Australia today. While numbers of deaths are highest in
urban areas, the problem has particular significance in rural areas,
where a greater proportion of young males is involved in fatal self
What is also becoming apparent is that many causes have been linked to
suicidal behaviour. As recently as a decade ago, it was still common
to seek to find explanations in the immediate circumstances of the
person who died. A dispute at school or home, the ending of a teenage
romance or minor trouble with the law were frequently cited as causes
in individual cases. The following examines a broad range of issues
that may be viewed as contributing factors in youth suicide.
A critical question in addressing youth suicide is the extent to which
mental health problems and illnesses are invol...
... middle of paper ...
... pp 10 - 45.
4. P. Baume, "Suicide in the Bush : Myth or Reality". (Canberra:
Australia National University Press, 1996) pp 15 - 63.
5. M. Stainsby, "Youth Suicide and Suicide Prevention". (Sydney:
Sydney University Press, 1998) pp 27 - 52.
Baume, P. "Suicide in the Bush : Myth or Reality". (Canberra:
Australia National University Press, 1996) pp 15 - 63.
Baume, P. "Suicide in Australia". (Canberra: Australia National
University Press, 1997) pp 24 - 56.
Hassan, P. "Suicide Explained : The Australian Experience".
(Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 1995) pp 32 - 48.
Ruzicka, L. "Youth Suicide in Australia". (Canberra: Australian
National University Press, 1999) pp 10 - 45.
Stainsby, M. "Youth Suicide and Suicide Prevention". (Sydney: Sydney
University Press, 1998) pp 27 - 52.
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