NEW YORK — The suicide rate for girls and young women in the U.S. continues to rise, at a pace far faster than for young males, health officials said Thursday.
The rate for boys and young men increased since 2007, too. And it remains three times higher than the female rate for ages 10 to 24.
But the female increase has been steadier. Why is not clear; one expert said it may be because more girls and young women are hanging themselves or using other forms of suffocation.
That way is more lethal than drug overdose — the method used the most by younger females.
From 2007-2013, the rate for young females went from 2.2 to 3.4 per 100,000. That's the highest since the 3.1 rate recorded in 1981, when such tracking began.
The rate for young males went from 10.7 to 11.9 per 100,000, although the rate seems to have leveled off in the last few years.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the report Thursday.
Suicide rates for younger people have ebbed and flowed since 1981, with a recent upward trend starting around 2007. There were 4,320 suicide deaths in 2007; the toll was 5,264 in 2013.
Suicide rates for older adults tend to be higher, in the range of 15 or 20 per 100,000.
Since 2007, suicide rates have increased for older age groups, too. Some experts believe the trend was ignited by the economic recession from December 2007 until June 2009.
CDC report: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr