Young men in Ireland are at an increasing risk of suicide, according to new research.
The National Suicide Research Foundation, an independent organisation which aims to prevent suicide and self-harm, have published new figures showing the rise in rates of suicide amongst men between the ages of 25-34 in their annual report.
Although the overall number of deaths by suicide has steadily fallen across Ireland over the past few years, the number of deaths in men in this age bracket has risen from 19.5 per 100,000 population in 2014 up to 24.2 last year.
The number of deaths by suicide in 2015 totalled 451, 375 of which were males and 76 females, meaning that men are almost five times more likely to take their own lives than women.
This figure, slightly down from the previous year’s figure of 459, is now below that of 2007, when suicides were at their lowest ebb. The years immediately following saw a sharp increase in suicides, likely due to the 2008 financial crisis.
Between 2011 and 2013, there were small but steady decreases in the rate of self harm in Ireland (-4%, -2% and -6% respectively), and since 2004, the proportion of patients admitted to a general ward following instances of self-harm has declined by 45%.
Minister of State for Mental Health and Older People, Ms Helen McEntee, said that while the overall reduction in rates of suicide was good news, she was ”particularly concerned about the high rates of suicide and serious self-harm incidents in young people”.
The National Office for Suicide Prevention received an increase of approx. 20% on their budget since last year, bringing their total budget to €11.87 million. This money is used to fund non-profit and community organisations around the country aiming to prevent self harm and suicide, as well as supporting the bereaved.
If you feel the need to talk, here are some numbers to call-
National Suicide Helpline (suicide prevention, self harm, bereavement) – 1800 247 247
Samaritans (support helpline) – 116 123
Aware (depression, anxiety) – 1800 80 48 48