SOCIAL SYSTEMS SIMULATION GROUP
Introduction to Social Research
Mr. Roland Werner
The Rise of Youth Suicide in America
San Diego State University
Keyword List: suicide, teen suicide, young adult suicide, suicide risk factors, suicide rates, causes of suicide, suicide statistics, suicide ideation, suicide attempts, copycat suicide
Abstract: Suicide is an increasing problem among American youth. Today, more young people than ever are considering taking their own lives. Suicide rates have been on the increase for the past three decades, and suicide has become the third leading cause of death among American youth. The key elements in this social system are young people, individuals between the ages of 15 and 29. A youth may start out normal and non-suicidal, but many young people today will encounter a range of problems that lead there to consider suicide, attempt it, and many of these will end up dead. What is the process that can turn our youth to suicide? The purpose of this paper is to study young people, and determine what could be causing so many of there to choose death. Research started on this question during the years when youth suicide rates started climbing (1970's), and many, studies have been done about the possible causes and contributors of suicide. Because of the complex and highly personal nature of this issue, it is generally agreed that there is no single cause of suicide. Rather, there are a number of risk factors which can impact the young person and either directly or indirectly contribute to suicide ideation and attempts. These risk factors range from depression, loneliness and isolation, to substance abuse, sexuality and high divorce rates. The risk factors typically cause more mental and emotional stress on the individual in question. However, it is not necessarily true that the more risk factors they experience, the higher the probability of suicide, as there is no consensus on which factors carry more weight when considering suicide. This report will take into consideration the risks and contributors of suicide, as well as further exploring the process that seems to be driving American young people to suicide.
Copyright © 2004 by Social Systems Simulation Group and Naomi Anderson. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher or author.
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