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Child suicides in Sweden, 2000–2018
Umeå universitet, Medicinska fakulteten, Institutionen för samhällsmedicin och rehabilitering, Rättsmedicin. Department of Clinical Sciences in Malmö, Center for Primary Health Care Research, Clinical Research Centre, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden.ORCID-id: 0000-0001-6510-8387
2022 (Engelska)Ingår i: European Journal of Pediatrics, ISSN 0340-6199, E-ISSN 1432-1076, Vol. 181, nr 2, s. 599-607Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat) Published
Abstract [en]

Although child mortality is decreasing in Sweden, an increase in suicide rates has been previously observed among children and adolescents collectively. To increase knowledge about trends, demographics, and means in child suicides, data including all child (< 18 years) suicides in Sweden in 2000 through 2018 were retrieved from the Swedish National Board of Forensic Medicine. In all, a total of 416 child suicides were found in a 19-year period, accounting for an annual suicide rate of 1.1/100,000 child population. The number of suicides increased with 2.2% by each successive year during the study period (p < 0.001). The mean age in both sexes was 16 years; boys accounted for 55% and girls for 45% of all study cases. The majority of the children who died by suicide (96%) were teenagers (13–17 years old) and suicides in children younger than 10 years were uncommon. Suicide methods were 59% hanging, 20% lying/jumping in front of a moving object, 8% jumping from a height, 7% firearm injury, 4% poisoning, and 2% other methods. Sex differences were significant (p < 0.001) only for firearms being preferably used by boys. The vast majority of firearms used were licensed long-barreled weapons. Conclusion: The number of child suicides in Sweden is relatively low but increasing. Most of the children used a violent and highly lethal method. Prevention of premature mortality is an urgent concern with an emphasis on resolutely reducing the availability of suicide means.

What is Known:

• Suicide is a significant cause of death globally among children, bringing tragic consequences for young individuals, their family, and the entire society.

• Suicide rates and distribution of suicide methods in children differ between countries and settings, but studies of time trends are scarce.

What is New:

• Increasing number of minors’ suicides and the predominance of violent methods emphasize the importance of prevention strategies tailored for a child population.

• Even in a setting of very restrictive firearm laws, firearm suicides in children must not be overlooked.

Ort, förlag, år, upplaga, sidor
Springer, 2022. Vol. 181, nr 2, s. 599-607
Nyckelord [en]
Children, Demographics, Suicide, Suicide methods
Nationell ämneskategori
Folkhälsovetenskap, global hälsa, socialmedicin och epidemiologi Psykiatri
Forskningsämne
folkhälsa
Identifikatorer
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-187386DOI: 10.1007/s00431-021-04240-7ISI: 000692058000001PubMedID: 34476611Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85124433945OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-187386DiVA, id: diva2:1592732
Tillgänglig från: 2021-09-09 Skapad: 2021-09-09 Senast uppdaterad: 2023-03-24Bibliografiskt granskad

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