A quarter of young adults have contemplated suicide during the pandemic, CDC says

Peter Weber
·1 min read

"Symptoms of anxiety disorder and depressive disorder increased considerably in the United States during April–June of 2020, compared with the same period in 2019," the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a report released Friday. Just over 40 percent of respondents in a June 24-30 survey reported at least one adverse mental or behavioral health condition, ranging from anxiety disorder to increased substance use to cope with the stress of the COVID-19 pandemic.

And 10.7 percent of respondents reported having seriously considered suicide over the previous 30 days because of the pandemic. That's a high number, but it was especially prevalent among certain groups.

For example, 25.5 percent of young adults age 18 to 24 said they had considered suicide in June, versus 16 percent of respondents age 25-44 and 3.8 percent of those 45 to 64. Other groups with high rates of suicidal ideation included essential workers (21.7 percent), people with less than a high school diploma (30 percent), Black (15.1 percent) and Hispanic (18.6 percent) respondents — 7.9 percent of white respondents said they had considered suicide — and unpaid adult caregivers (32.9 percent). Men (12.6 percent) were more likely to have considered suicide than women (8.9 percent).

"Community-level intervention and prevention efforts, including health communication strategies, designed to reach these groups could help address various mental health conditions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic," the CDC suggested. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, for those needing help, is 1-800-273-8255.

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