Investigation of suicide deaths in Turkey between 2015 and 2019
1Department of Forensic Medicine, Ankara University, School of Medicine, 06620 Ankara, Turkey
2Cankaya District Health Directorate, 06230 Ankara, Turkey
3Department of Criminalistics, Ankara University Institute of Forensic Sciences, 06620 Ankara, Turkey
Submitted: 08 June 2021 Accepted: 09 August 2021
Online publish date: 26 August 2021
Background and objectives: Although suicide is the act of an individual, it is an important public health problem that affects the individual's environment and also society. Approximately 800,000 people die by suicide each year. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the socio-demographic characteristics of fatal suicides in Turkey between 2015 and 2019.
Materials and methods: This observational-analytical study was conducted by examining retrospec-tive records in the period 2015–2019. The study was conducted by secondary analysis based on data from the Turkish Statistical Institute.
Results: During the study period, the suicide rate (per 100,000) varied in the range 3.94–4.15 and the mean (standard deviation, SD) was 4.07 (0.09). The mean (SD) suicide rate was 6.14 (0.13) in males and 1.99 (0.18) in females; it was higher in males (z = 2.611; p = 0.008). Considering age groups, there was no difference between sex in terms of suicide rate among those aged <19 years (z = 1.617; p = 0.446), whereas the suicide rate was higher in males and in those aged ≥20 years (p < 0.05 for each). During the study period, the most common suicide mean in both men and women was "by hanging". The incidence of suicide using chemical substances and by jumping from a height was higher in women than in men, whereas the rate of suicide using firearms was high in men (p = 0.000). When the female/male suicide rate was compared according to marital status, the suicide rate was observed to be higher in men regardless of marital status, and this difference was more striking in men who were divorced or whose spouse had died.
Conclusion: Between 2015 and 2019, the suicide rate was higher especially in older men and in those who had lost a spouse. Therefore, socio-demographic characteristics should be considered in planning interventions to prevent suicides and guiding rehabilitation programs following a suicide attempt.
Suicide; Sex; Turkey; TURKSTAT; Marital status; Education; Economic problems
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