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      Suicidal behaviours among adolescents from 90 countries: a pooled analysis of the global school-based student health survey


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          Understanding the burden and determinants of suicide during adolescence is key to achieving global health goals. We examined the prevalence and determinants of self-reported suicidal ideation and attempts among younger (13–15 years) and older adolescents (16–17 years).


          Pooled prevalence estimates with 95% confidence interval, were calculated for suicide ideation and attempts for 118 surveys from 90 countries that administered the Global School-based Student Health Survey (GSHS) to adolescents (13–17 years of age) from 2003 to 2017. Indicators (including individual and social factors) associated with suicidal ideation and attempts were determined from multivariable linear regressions on key outcomes.


          The prevalence of suicidal ideation representing 397,299 adolescents (51.3% female) was significantly higher among girls than boys whereas attempts did not differ by age or sex. Being bullied, or having no close friends was associated with suicidal ideation among girls 13–15 years and 16–17 years, respectively. Among all boys, being in a fight and having no close friends was associated with suicidal ideation with the addition of serious injury for boys 13–15 years. Common to all younger adolescents was an association of suicide attempt with being bullied and having had a serious injury. Among young boys, having no close friends was an additional indicator for suicide attempt. Having no close friends was associated with suicide attempt in older adolescents with the addition to being bullied in older girls and serious injury in older boys.


          Building positive social relationships with peers and avoiding serious injury appear key to suicide prevention strategies for vulnerable adolescents. Targeted programs by age group and sex for such indicators could improve mental health during adolescence in low and middle-income countries, given the diverse risk profiles for suicidal ideation and attempts.

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          Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance — United States, 2017

          Problem Health-risk behaviors contribute to the leading causes of morbidity and mortality among youth and adults in the United States. In addition, significant health disparities exist among demographic subgroups of youth defined by sex, race/ethnicity, and grade in school and between sexual minority and nonsexual minority youth. Population-based data on the most important health-related behaviors at the national, state, and local levels can be used to help monitor the effectiveness of public health interventions designed to protect and promote the health of youth at the national, state, and local levels. Reporting Period Covered September 2016–December 2017. Description of the System The Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS) monitors six categories of priority health-related behaviors among youth and young adults: 1) behaviors that contribute to unintentional injuries and violence; 2) tobacco use; 3) alcohol and other drug use; 4) sexual behaviors related to unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection; 5) unhealthy dietary behaviors; and 6) physical inactivity. In addition, YRBSS monitors the prevalence of other health-related behaviors, obesity, and asthma. YRBSS includes a national school-based Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) conducted by CDC and state and large urban school district school-based YRBSs conducted by state and local education and health agencies. Starting with the 2015 YRBSS cycle, a question to ascertain sexual identity and a question to ascertain sex of sexual contacts were added to the national YRBS questionnaire and to the standard YRBS questionnaire used by the states and large urban school districts as a starting point for their questionnaires. This report summarizes results from the 2017 national YRBS for 121 health-related behaviors and for obesity, overweight, and asthma by demographic subgroups defined by sex, race/ethnicity, and grade in school and by sexual minority status; updates the numbers of sexual minority students nationwide; and describes overall trends in health-related behaviors during 1991–2017. This reports also summarizes results from 39 state and 21 large urban school district surveys with weighted data for the 2017 YRBSS cycle by sex and sexual minority status (where available). Results Results from the 2017 national YRBS indicated that many high school students are engaged in health-risk behaviors associated with the leading causes of death among persons aged 10–24 years in the United States. During the 30 days before the survey, 39.2% of high school students nationwide (among the 62.8% who drove a car or other vehicle during the 30 days before the survey) had texted or e-mailed while driving, 29.8% reported current alcohol use, and 19.8% reported current marijuana use. In addition, 14.0% of students had taken prescription pain medicine without a doctor’s prescription or differently than how a doctor told them to use it one or more times during their life. During the 12 months before the survey, 19.0% had been bullied on school property and 7.4% had attempted suicide. Many high school students are engaged in sexual risk behaviors that relate to unintended pregnancies and STIs, including HIV infection. Nationwide, 39.5% of students had ever had sexual intercourse and 9.7% had had sexual intercourse with four or more persons during their life. Among currently sexually active students, 53.8% reported that either they or their partner had used a condom during their last sexual intercourse. Results from the 2017 national YRBS also indicated many high school students are engaged in behaviors associated with chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, and diabetes. Nationwide, 8.8% of high school students had smoked cigarettes and 13.2% had used an electronic vapor product on at least 1 day during the 30 days before the survey. Forty-three percent played video or computer games or used a computer for 3 or more hours per day on an average school day for something that was not school work and 15.4% had not been physically active for a total of at least 60 minutes on at least 1 day during the 7 days before the survey. Further, 14.8% had obesity and 15.6% were overweight. The prevalence of most health-related behaviors varies by sex, race/ethnicity, and, particularly, sexual identity and sex of sexual contacts. Specifically, the prevalence of many health-risk behaviors is significantly higher among sexual minority students compared with nonsexual minority students. Nonetheless, analysis of long-term temporal trends indicates that the overall prevalence of most health-risk behaviors has moved in the desired direction. Interpretation Most high school students cope with the transition from childhood through adolescence to adulthood successfully and become healthy and productive adults. However, this report documents that some subgroups of students defined by sex, race/ethnicity, grade in school, and especially sexual minority status have a higher prevalence of many health-risk behaviors that might place them at risk for unnecessary or premature mortality, morbidity, and social problems (e.g., academic failure, poverty, and crime). Public Health Action YRBSS data are used widely to compare the prevalence of health-related behaviors among subpopulations of students; assess trends in health-related behaviors over time; monitor progress toward achieving 21 national health objectives; provide comparable state and large urban school district data; and take public health actions to decrease health-risk behaviors and improve health outcomes among youth. Using this and other reports based on scientifically sound data is important for raising awareness about the prevalence of health-related behaviors among students in grades 9–12, especially sexual minority students, among decision makers, the public, and a wide variety of agencies and organizations that work with youth. These agencies and organizations, including schools and youth-friendly health care providers, can help facilitate access to critically important education, health care, and high-impact, evidence-based interventions.
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            Relationship between peer victimization, cyberbullying, and suicide in children and adolescents: a meta-analysis.

            Peer victimization is related to an increased chance of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts among children and adolescents. OBJECTIVE To examine the relationship between peer victimization and suicidal ideation or suicide attempts using meta-analysis. DATA SOURCES Ovid MEDLINE, PsycINFO, and Web of Science were searched for articles from 1910 to 2013. The search terms were bully*, teas*, victim*, mobbing, ragging, and harassment in combination with the term suic*. Of the 491 studies identified, 34 reported on the relationship between peer victimization and suicidal ideation, with a total of 284,375 participants. Nine studies reported on the relationship between peer victimization and suicide attempts, with a total of 70,102 participants. STUDY SELECTION Studies were eligible for inclusion if they reported an effect size on the relationship between peer victimization and suicidal ideation or suicide attempt in children or adolescents.
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              Gender differences in suicidal behavior in adolescents and young adults: systematic review and meta-analysis of longitudinal studies

              Objectives To assess the association between gender and suicide attempt/death and identify gender-specific risk/protective factors in adolescents/young adults. Methods Systematic review (5 databases until January 2017). Population-based longitudinal studies considering non-clinical populations, aged 12–26 years, assessing associations between gender and suicide attempts/death, or evaluating their gender risk/protective factors, were included. Random effect meta-analyses were performed. Results Sixty-seven studies were included. Females presented higher risk of suicide attempt (OR 1.96, 95% CI 1.54–2.50), and males for suicide death (HR 2.50, 95% CI 1.8–3.6). Common risk factors of suicidal behaviors for both genders are previous mental or substance abuse disorder and exposure to interpersonal violence. Female-specific risk factors for suicide attempts are eating disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder, being victim of dating violence, depressive symptoms, interpersonal problems and previous abortion. Male-specific risk factors for suicide attempt are disruptive behavior/conduct problems, hopelessness, parental separation/divorce, friend’s suicidal behavior, and access to means. Male-specific risk factors for suicide death are drug abuse, externalizing disorders, and access to means. For females, no risk factors for suicide death were studied. Conclusions More evidence about female-specific risk/protective factors of suicide death, for adolescent/young adults, is needed. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (10.1007/s00038-018-1196-1) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

                Author and article information

                BMC Public Health
                BMC Public Health
                BMC Public Health
                BioMed Central (London )
                10 August 2020
                10 August 2020
                : 20
                : 1102
                [1 ]GRID grid.42327.30, ISNI 0000 0004 0473 9646, Centre for Global Child Health, , Hospital for Sick Children, ; 686 Bay Street, 11th Floor, Suite 11.9805, Toronto, ON M5G 0A4 Canada
                [2 ]GRID grid.17063.33, ISNI 0000 0001 2157 2938, Department of Nutritional Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, , University of Toronto, Medical Sciences Building, ; 1 King’s Circle College, Toronto, Ontario M5S 1A8 Canada
                [3 ]GRID grid.68312.3e, ISNI 0000 0004 1936 9422, School of Nutrition, Faculty of Community Service, , Ryerson University, ; Kerr Hall South, Room KHS-349; 50 Gould Street, Toronto, Ontario M5B 1X8 Canada
                [4 ]GRID grid.42327.30, ISNI 0000 0004 0473 9646, Department of Psychiatry, , Hospital for Sick Children, ; 555 University Avenue, Burton Wing, Toronto, Ontario M5G 1X8 Canada
                [5 ]GRID grid.17063.33, ISNI 0000 0001 2157 2938, Department of Psychiatry, , University of Toronto, ; 250 College Street, 8th floor, Toronto, Ontario M5T 1R8 Canada
                [6 ]GRID grid.155956.b, ISNI 0000 0000 8793 5925, Centre for Addiction, and Mental Health, Cundill Centre for Child and Youth Depression, ; 80 Workman Way, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1H4 Canada
                [7 ]GRID grid.7147.5, ISNI 0000 0001 0633 6224, Centre of Excellence in Women, and Child Health, , Aga Khan University, ; Stadium Road, PO Box 3500, Karachi, 74800 Pakistan
                [8 ]GRID grid.17063.33, ISNI 0000 0001 2157 2938, Dalla Lana School of Public Health University of Toronto, ; Health Sciences Building, 155 College Street, 6th floor, Toronto, Ontario M5T 3M7 Canada
                Author information
                © The Author(s) 2020

                Open AccessThis article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated in a credit line to the data.

                : 29 June 2019
                : 5 July 2020
                Research Article
                Custom metadata
                © The Author(s) 2020

                Public health
                adolescent mental health,prevalence,risk indicators,suicidal ideation,suicide attempt


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