Depressive illness effects almost 21 million American adults in any given year, while nearly everyone thinks about suicide at some time in his or her life. We’re sharing facts about depression and suicide from the American Association of Suicidology to spread accurate information on this illness and support you or someone in your life in the important decision to seek out help.
Depression is the prevalent mental health disorder and the lifetime risk for depression is 6-25%. There are two types of depression. Major depression presents symptoms that interfere with a person’s ability to function in all areas of life, including work, family and sleep. Dysthymia, a less severe depression, impedes a person’s ability to function at normal levels. A family history of depression increases your chances of having depression by 11x.
Treatment of depression is effective 60-80% of the time, however less than 25% of people with depression receive the proper treatment. If no treatment is sought out, depression can lead to other mental disorders including alcohol and substance abuse, higher rates of recurrent episodes and a higher rate of suicide.
Major depression is the psychiatric diagnosis most commonly associated with suicide. The lifetime rate of suicide among individuals with untreated depressive disorders is nearly 20%. However, if treated the suicide rate of patients falls to 141 per 100,0000.
Suicide is preventable. Most people contemplating suicide desperately want to live, but they are unable to see alternatives to their problems. Most suicidal people give definite warning signs of their intentions.
Someone contemplating suicide often feels like their situation is inescapable. They feel that they: