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      Suicide and Attempted Suicide in Jhenaidah District, Bangladesh, 2010–2018

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          Abstract. Background: Suicide and attempted suicide are a serious but under-explored public health problem in Bangladesh. Survey estimates suggest that Jhenaidah District, one of the 64 districts that make up Bangladesh, is one of the highest suicide-prone regions in Bangladesh. Relatively little is known about the magnitude of suicide attempts in the district. Aims: This article describes the incidence of suicide and suicide attempts for Jhenaidah, Bangladesh for the period 2010–2018. Method: Primary descriptive analysis was performed on routine data collected by a Bangladesh-based nongovernment organization (NGO): Societies for Voluntary Activities (SOVA). Results: A total of 22,675 suicide attempts and 3,152 suicides occurred in the district. The rate of suicide attempts was found to be 136.35/100,000 and the suicide rate was found to be 20.6/100,000 in Jhenaidah. The subdistrict Sadar had the highest incidence of suicide attempt (38.09%) and suicide (33.47%). Poisoning was the most common method of suicide attempt for both males (77.07%) and females (77%). Limitations: Many cases of suicide attempts and suicide are unreported in Bangladesh owing to stigmatization; only reported cases form part of this investigation. Conclusion: Jhenaidah has very high rates of suicide and suicide attempts that surpass the global and Bangladesh averages. Although females demonstrate higher suicide rates, male suicide rates have gradually increased over the study period. Future studies are called for to better understand the local patterns and dynamics of fatal and nonfatal suicidal behaviors. Developing a sub-district-, district-, and national-level suicide prevention strategy ought to be considered a priority.

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          Most cited references 27

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          Suicide and suicidal behavior.

          Suicidal behavior is a leading cause of injury and death worldwide. Information about the epidemiology of such behavior is important for policy-making and prevention. The authors reviewed government data on suicide and suicidal behavior and conducted a systematic review of studies on the epidemiology of suicide published from 1997 to 2007. The authors' aims were to examine the prevalence of, trends in, and risk and protective factors for suicidal behavior in the United States and cross-nationally. The data revealed significant cross-national variability in the prevalence of suicidal behavior but consistency in age of onset, transition probabilities, and key risk factors. Suicide is more prevalent among men, whereas nonfatal suicidal behaviors are more prevalent among women and persons who are young, are unmarried, or have a psychiatric disorder. Despite an increase in the treatment of suicidal persons over the past decade, incidence rates of suicidal behavior have remained largely unchanged. Most epidemiologic research on suicidal behavior has focused on patterns and correlates of prevalence. The next generation of studies must examine synergistic effects among modifiable risk and protective factors. New studies must incorporate recent advances in survey methods and clinical assessment. Results should be used in ongoing efforts to decrease the significant loss of life caused by suicidal behavior.
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            Suicide receives increasing attention worldwide, with many countries developing national strategies for prevention. Rates of suicide vary greatly between countries, with the greatest burdens in developing countries. Many more men than women die by suicide. Although suicide rates in elderly people have fallen in many countries, those in young people have risen. Rates also vary with ethnic origin, employment status, and occupation. Most people who die by suicide have psychiatric disorders, notably mood, substance-related, anxiety, psychotic, and personality disorders, with comorbidity being common. Previous self-harm is a major risk factor. Suicide is also associated with physical characteristics and disorders and smoking. Family history of suicidal behaviour is important, as are upbringing, exposure to suicidal behaviour by others and in the media, and availability of means. Approaches to suicide prevention include those targeting high-risk groups and population strategies. There are, however, many challenges to large-scale prevention, especially in developing countries.
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              Is Open Access

              Suicidal behaviour across the African continent: a review of the literature

              Background Suicide is a major cause of premature mortality worldwide, but data on its epidemiology in Africa, the world’s second most populous continent, are limited. Methods We systematically reviewed published literature on suicidal behaviour in African countries. We searched PubMed, Web of Knowledge, PsycINFO, African Index Medicus, Eastern Mediterranean Index Medicus and African Journals OnLine and carried out citation searches of key articles. We crudely estimated the incidence of suicide and suicide attempts in Africa based on country-specific data and compared these with published estimates. We also describe common features of suicide and suicide attempts across the studies, including information related to age, sex, methods used and risk factors. Results Regional or national suicide incidence data were available for less than one third (16/53) of African countries containing approximately 60% of Africa’s population; suicide attempt data were available for <20% of countries (7/53). Crude estimates suggest there are over 34,000 (inter-quartile range 13,141 to 63,757) suicides per year in Africa, with an overall incidence rate of 3.2 per 100,000 population. The recent Global Burden of Disease (GBD) estimate of 49,558 deaths is somewhat higher, but falls within the inter-quartile range of our estimate. Suicide rates in men are typically at least three times higher than in women. The most frequently used methods of suicide are hanging and pesticide poisoning. Reported risk factors are similar for suicide and suicide attempts and include interpersonal difficulties, mental and physical health problems, socioeconomic problems and drug and alcohol use/abuse. Qualitative studies are needed to identify additional culturally relevant risk factors and to understand how risk factors may be connected to suicidal behaviour in different socio-cultural contexts. Conclusions Our estimate is somewhat lower than GBD, but still clearly indicates suicidal behaviour is an important public health problem in Africa. More regional studies, in both urban and rural areas, are needed to more accurately estimate the burden of suicidal behaviour across the continent. Qualitative studies are required in addition to quantitative studies.

                Author and article information

                Hogrefe Publishing
                October 28, 2019
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                [ 1 ]Department of Sociology, East West University, Dhaka, Bangladesh
                [ 2 ]Institute for Social and Health Sciences, University of South Africa (UNISA), Cape Town, South Africa
                [ 3 ]Society for Voluntary Activities (SOVA), Jhenaidah, Bangladesh
                Author notes
                Anisur Rahman Khan, Department of Sociology, East West University, A/2 Jahurul Islam Avenue, Aftabangar, Dhaka 1212, Bangladesh, arkhan@
                Self URI (journal-page):
                Research Trends


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