Most people think that there are more suicides around Thanksgiving and Christmas. The truth is that suicide rates are actually lowest in winter months and highest in the spring. October accounted for nearly twice as many suicide attempts as reported in July.
Experts aren’t entirely sure but there are theories.
In a lecture I saw at VCU Grand Rounds, the doctor said the theory was that people don’t have the energy to follow through in the winter.
“During the spring, some people become more physically active or agitated, which could potentially make them more likely to act on their thoughts. Maybe sunshine acts in a similar way in a minority of people.”
There are other theories, one of which is that the release of pollen-triggered immune responses brings about changes in brain chemistry. This theory suggests a relationship between inflammation due to pollen and suicide.
For teenagers, suicide rates go up during the school year and down during summer suggesting that school may be a trigger.
No one knows for sure why suicide peaks in April and is lowest in July.
2 thoughts on “#MythBustingMondays -Suicide rates are highest at the holidays”
I definitely didn’t know this.
The first time I heard it I was surprised, too.