Suicide rates for middle-aged people are on the rise-- particularly for white men without college degrees -- and a combination of poor health and a poor economy may be driving it, according to a new study.
Sociologists from Rutgers University in New Jersey and Emory University in Atlanta found that suicide rates have climbed since 1988 for males aged 40-49 years, and since 1999 for females aged 40-59 years and males aged 50-59 years.
Men and women with a high school degree or less are more likely to commit suicide. Rates in men with a high school diploma went up 11.7 percent in the 40 to 49 age group and 27 percent in the 50 to 59 age group. Women in those groups saw their suicide rates increase by 15 and 17 percent, respectively.
In 1979 the suicide rate for men aged 40 to 49 was 21.8 per 100,000. It rose to as high as 24 per 100,000 in 1996 and to 25 by 2005. For men 50 to 59 it was 23.9 in 1979, fell to 20.4 per 100,000 in 1999 and rose again to nearly 23.8 in 2005.
Another interesting note is the fact that the study seems to indicate the risk of suicide was substantially larger for unmarried than for married people, with unmarried middle-aged men 3.5 times as likely to commit suicide as married middle-aged men.
Personally,I would've thought just the opposite.