Skip to main content

About Suicide

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline Logo with Ribbon

What is suicide?

  • Suicide ideation - Thoughts of engaging in suicide-related behavior.
  • Suicide attempt - A nonfatal self-directed potentially injurious behavior with any intent to die as a result of the behavior. A suicide attempt may or may not result in injury.
  • Suicide - Death caused by self-directed injurious behavior with any intent to die as a result of the behavior.

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of the Surgeon General and National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention. 2012 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention: Goals and Objectives for Action. Washington, DC: HHS, September 2012.

Spread the word, language matters

Pictorial about Spread the word, language matters

Source: Retrieved from: Language and suicide | Everymind .

Current Information on Suicide-related Thoughts and Behaviors in Florida

Pictorial about Current Information on Suicide-related Thoughts and Behaviors in Florida

In 2019, 3,427 Floridians died by suicide, representing a 3.5 percent decrease from the number of deaths in 2018. Over half of suicide deaths in 2019 involved a firearm. For non-fatal intentional self-harm injuries, a total of 8,370 hospitalizations occurred in Florida in 2019. Furthermore, there were 12,514 Emergency Department visits related to self-harm injuries. Of note, intentional self-harm includes incidents with and without intent to die, therefore, not all self-harm injuries represent suicide attempts. Nevertheless, non-suicidal self-injury may incur additional risk for future suicide attempts and potentially death.
Sources: Florida Department of Health, Florida Bureau of Vital Statistics Suicide and Behavioral Health Profile. Retrieved fromhttp://www.flhealthcharts.com/ChartsReports/rdPage.aspx?rdReport=ChartsProfiles.SuicideProfileDashboard.

Chart 1. depicts a slight overall increase in the age-adjusted suicide death rate across genders and age groups across the previous decade. White males continue to die by suicide at the highest rate (29.7 per 100,000), followed by Black males (10.0 per 100,000), White females (8.6 per 100,000), and Black females (2.0 per 100,000).
Chart depicting Age-adjusted Suicide Rate Per 100,000 Population In Florida By Gender For 2010 - 2019
Data Sources: Chart D-13: Resident Suicide Deaths and Rates per 100,000 Population, by Race and Gender, Florida, Census Years 1970-2000 and 2009-2019: Florida Vital Statistics Annual Report (2020) retrieved from http://www.flpublichealth.com/VSbook/PDF/2019/VSCOMP.pdf .

Chart 2. depicts 722 individuals 55 – 64 years old died by suicide in 2019. The age group with the second most deaths was 45 – 54, followed by those aged 25 – 34.
Chart depicting 2019 Suicide Death Counts by Age Group
Data Sources: Table D-11: Resident Deaths for Selected Causes, by Age Groups, by County, Florida, 2019: Florida Vital Statistics Annual Report (2020) retrieved from http://www.flpublichealth.com/VSbook/PDF/2019/VSCOMP.pdf .

Graph 1. Provides information on the estimated percentages for each method used to die by suicide in 2019. Firearms represented the largest percentage, with about 53% of deaths caused by firearms, followed by hanging/suffocation, drugs and biological substances, other method, and jumping from a high place. Importantly, firearms continue to be the most common used method in suicide deaths.
Graph 1. 2019 External Causes of Death by Suicide
Data Sources: Table D-10: Resident Deaths for 358 Cause Groups, By Age Group, Florida, 2019: Florida Vital Statistics Annual Report (2020) retrieved from http://www.flpublichealth.com/VSbook/PDF/2019/VSCOMP.pdf .

How can I help prevent suicide?

  • There are many ways you can help prevent suicide. First, learn the warning signs. Second connect the person displaying signs of suicide with crisis support. You can find various crisis support hotlines in the crisis support section of this website.

If you or someone you know needs support, please call 1-800-273-8255

What are the warning signs of suicide?

Warning signs are like red flags that may indicate that a person may be more at risk for suicide.

Pictorial about Know Your Signs

Source: You Are Not Alone. "Infographic: Know the Signs," by Andrea Nadolny.

How do I know if someone is at risk for suicide?

Risks are characteristics linked with suicide and might not be the cause of it.

Risk Factors

Here is a partial list of some examples of risk factors for suicide. Risks are characteristics linked with suicide.

  • Family history of suicide
  • Family history of child maltreatment
  • Previous suicide attempt(s)
  • History of mental disorders, particularly clinical depression
  • History of alcohol and substance abuse
  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Impulsive or aggressive tendencies
  • Isolation, a feeling of being cut off from other people
  • Barriers to accessing mental health treatment
  • Loss (relational, social, work, or financial)
  • Physical illness
  • Easy access to lethal methods

If you or someone you know might be at risk, please call 1-800-273-8255

Protective Factors

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, these are some protective factors for suicide. This is a partial list.

  • Effective clinical care for mental, physical, and substance abuse disorders
  • Easy access to a variety of clinical interventions and support for help seeking
  • Family and community support (connectedness)
  • Support from ongoing medical and mental health care relationships
  • Skills in problem solving, conflict resolution, and nonviolent ways of handling disputes

Source: http://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/suicide/riskprotectivefactors.html