Greatest Risk Factors For Suicide

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Common sense would suggest that risk factors for suicide are at their greatest — ever — in 2020. We’re dealing with change nobody could’ve predicted: a global pandemic, racial tensions, record unemployment and just general feelings of major uncertainty.

Risk Factors For Suicide Are At Their Greatest in 2020

Well, your common sense would be right. Before I get to this year, let’s go way back to — a whole different era — last year.

In 2019, nearly 800,000 people died of suicide. That means every 40 seconds someone was taking their own life. And it’s estimated that for every person who dies from suicide there’s another 20 who attempted suicide. You should also know that suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US.

So, clearly, suicide rates have been their very own pandemic long before a virus turned all our worlds upside-down.

Now, Google searches on suicide, calls to suicide prevention lines and visits to online support groups are up more than 200% since the lockdown began.

We’ve got to discuss the greatest risk factors — regardless of population and demographic. To be clear, these risk factors place people at a much higher likelihood of attempting suicide.

Any previously known or unknown or diagnosed mental disorder. Risk factor 1


  • Mood disorders
  • Schizophrenia
  • Bipolar
  • ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder)
  • Autism
  • Any anxiety disorder
  • Certain personality disorders

Those who regularly use substances, like: drugs, alcohol, painkillers.Risk factor 2

People who tend to be more impulsive or aggressive.Risk factor 3

Anyone with history of trauma, sexual abuse, verbal abuse, physical abuse.Risk factor 4

People who are experiencing a major physical disability, setback, chronic illness.Risk factor 5

Those with a family history of suicide, have a close friend or relative who committed suicide.Risk factor 6

Anyone who’s in recent job or financial distress.Risk factor 7

Those who’ve recently lost a relationship.Risk factor 8

Being isolated or lacking peer social support.Risk factor 9

One Of The Greatest Risk Factors Of Suicide Is Isolation from your Peers

We’ve been isolated, our kids have been isolated, our parents have been isolated. The financial devastation that we’re experiencing globally is undeniable.

Those in the military. In particular, those who have served in combat.Risk factor 10

Those who fear a stigma associated with therapy.Risk factor 11

Current and former addicts. Risk factor 12

Those who’ve been exposed to or who have had the notion of suicide normalized because of their group of friends, real life circles, watching things in social media, on the internet, documentaries. Risk factor 12

Those who, because of religious beliefs, believe that suicide is in fact a noble resolution to a personal dilemma. Risk factor 13

We don’t need to see more statistics because we know the greatest risk factors. And the risk factors are now affecting more people than ever, so we’ve got to start talking about this now.

And that’s exactly what I’m doing in this The Chalene Show podcast — where you’ll hear my cold hard advice to parents among so many other life-changing tips:

Don’t forget to subscribe to TCS! You’ll get free weekly shows dedicated to your overall mental and physical well being. I love you.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Available 24 hours. 1-800-273-8255


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