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Journal Article


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, USA. MMWR Morb. Mortal. Wkly. Rep. 2004; 53(22): 474-476.


(Copyright © 2004, (in public domain), Publisher U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)






Violence is a major cause of morbidity and mortality, particularly among youths. In the United States, homicide and suicide are the second and third leading causes of death, respectively, for persons aged 13-19 years. Although suicide commonly is associated with anxiety, depression, and social withdrawal, research suggests a link between violent behaviors directed at oneself (i.e., suicidal behaviors) and violent behaviors directed at others among adolescents. Certain students who engage in extreme forms of violence, such as school shootings, exhibit suicidal ideation or behavior before or during the attack. However, suicidal behavior also might be associated with involvement in less extreme forms of violent behaviors, such as physical fighting, which might be a risk factor for more severe forms of violence. To characterize any potential association between suicide attempts and fighting, CDC analyzed self-reported 2001 data from a nationally representative sample of high school students in the United States. The results of that analysis indicated that students who reported attempting suicide during the preceding 12 months were nearly four times more likely also to have reported fighting than those who reported not attempting suicide. Prevention programs that seek to reduce both suicidal and violent behaviors are needed. Because prevalence of this association was determined to be highest in the 9th grade, these efforts might be most effective if implemented before students reach high school.


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