New data reveals that the suicide rate in the U.S. is a devastating 33% higher than it was in 1999.
Rates are up for almost all demographics, but most significantly among American Indians and Alaskan Native boys and girls, at 139%. This increase, among those groups, are seen by individuals living in more isolated areas, where addiction and depression is far more common. In fact, data shows that suicides, in general, are highest in the least densely populated states
Another, related study found that suicides among youths in particular have seen a major increase since 2000. The suicide rate coincides with rising rates of depression and addiction. It also correlates with lower rates of church attendance and more physical disconnection from people thanks to to the Internet and social media.
Interestingly, the only group that didn’t seen an uptick were Asian or Pacific-Islander ethnic groups.
What we do know is that those who attend church have higher rates of happiness and are less likely to commit suicide. I’ve written about these statistics and noted how a specific kind of church—small and unique church plants—are reaching despairing demographics like those listed here. One way to see these suicide numbers begin to reverse is to get more people inside a faith community they can rely on.