Depression and Suicide Rates

By: Marc Giangregorio, Andrew
Sadler, Michael Miron, Detria

Suicide Among College Students

More than 1,000 students commit suicide on college campuses per year. That
means approximately 8 students per 100,000 commit suicide.

Suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death among people aged 12-54 and the 2nd
leading cause of death for college students.

Twelve people aged 15-24 will commit suicide today, or 1 every 2 hours.

Caucasian males under the age of 21 are particularly at risk.

African American women have the lowest rates of committing suicide.

84% of all suicides are Caucasian people and 6% of all suicides are African

80% of suicides are males and 20% are females, but more women attempt
suicide than men to.

Risk Factors Specific to College Students

New environment

Loss of safety net from home

Isolation or alienation

Difficulty adjusting

Lack of coping skills

Experiments with drugs and alcohol

Loss of social network from home

Pressure academically and socially

Decreased academic performance and feelings/fear of failure

Suicide & Depression

Suicide death rates over the past 50 years for ages between 15-24
have increased by 200%

The number 1 cause of suicide is untreated depression. Less than
25% of people with depression receive help, or seek for help.

18.8 million Americans suffer from depression every year.

Those with depression have a risk of death by suicide 20 times
greater than those without depression.

Main Causes of Depression
Remember it’s not a choice
• The happiest people in the
world can look “fine” on the
outside but deep down they
may be depressed
• It’s hard to know who is
depressed but knowing what
causes depression is the first

Genetically- Some of those who suffer from depression have a family history of it and it happens to run in
their genes.
Medications- People who regularly take drugs such as Adderall and Accutane can be at risk of depression.
Abuse- The most common cause of depression is found to be by past physical, sexual, and emotional abuse
from others.
Major Losses- Losing a loved one is not an easy thing to forget and overcome. Depression often lingers on the
person for a long period of time making them feel lost and an overwhelming sense of sadness.
Transitioning- As people grow up, go to college, get married, or divorced they tend to miss what life was like
for them at one point and time and this can lead to hopelessness.
Seasonal Change- This cause is not as common, however, when the body is adjusting to change their can be
imbalances within the brain and in hormones.

Depression is a feeling of loneliness, numbness, and hopelessness affecting the persons everyday life.
Medication can be prescribed for this illness, however, it is only to mask this disorder and often harms
the body. In today’s world and society, depression is very common in young adults transitioning into
college. Friends you’ve had for years disappear and you are introduced to different people and
perspectives. If you are to feel symptom's of depression, it is beneficial to contact a doctor and
reach out for help and guidance. Everyday people are exposed to things that can cause one to be
depressed. Suicide is never the answer because there is always someone willing to help you and no
one is ever alone.

In order to help someone you must first recognize that they are
in need of assistance
Some signs of depression include:
• The person doesn’t seem to care about anything anymore
• The person is uncharacteristically sad, irritable, critical, or
• Expresses helplessness or hopelessness and has a reoccurring
negative outlook on life
• Complains about being tired of drained all the time
• And the most significant is that the person has withdrawn
from friends, family, and other social activities

Support and Encouragement

You want to make sure the person knows that they
are not alone

They need help maintaining an emotional

You can’t simply “fix” someone else’s depression,
don’t try to rescue them

Instead, you just need to be there for that person
when they need you because ultimately, recovery is
in the hands of the depressed person

How to Initiate the Conversation
Approach the person from a place of love and concern
by saying things like:

“I have been feeling concerned about you lately”

“Recently, I have noticed some differences in you
and wondered how you are doing”

“I wanted to chink in with you because you have
seemed down lately.”

Phrases to Avoid Saying
While there is a lot of positive things that can help people
recover there are some negative phrases that may not seem
that bad from your perspective, these include:
• It’s all in your head
• We all go through times like this
• Look on the bright side
• Just snap out of it
• What’s wrong with you
• I can’t do anything about your situation

Instead of saying these meaningless and shallow comments, you should try
some heartfelt phrases that show the other person you genuinely care, here are
a few examples:
You are not alone in this, I’m here for you

You may not believe it now, but the way you’re feeling will change

You are important to me, your life is important to me

Tell me what I can do now to help you

There are major differences between heartfelt expressions of love like these
phrases and the empty blurbs of negativity from the last slide

The Truth

Depression effects us all, whether we have experienced it
ourselves of whether it has effected someone we know
• The key is to seek help and to offer help to those in need
• Sometimes, no matter how hard we try, we can’t resolve
the issue. That is totally fine because most of us aren’t
• You have to recognize when your help isn’t enough and
then take the next step and talk to the depressed person
about seeking professional medical help.
• You can only do so much, but in the hands of a doctor
recovery is very possible

Xavier University

Xavier has been conducting a survey for four years about suicide
thoughts amongst incoming freshman.

Approximately 10% of the students surveyed responded.

¼, approximately 25% thought that it would be better if they were

10% have made an attempt to commit suicide at some point in their

7% of the incoming freshman had planned a way to kill themselves.

15% had thoughts of taking their own life.

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