Risk Factors

There is no single cause of suicide. However, there are variables that increase the likelihood that a person might consider, attempt, or die by suicide. Risk factors can be characteristics of an individual or their environment.

  • Prior suicide attempt(s)
  • Misuse and abuse of alcohol or other drugs
  • Mental health conditions (e.g. depression or other mood disorders)
  • Exposure to suicide
  • Family history of suicide attempts
  • Serious or chronic health condition and/or pain
  • Trauma history
  • Hopelessness
  • Access to lethal means
  • Social isolation
  • Lack of access to behavioral health care
  • Stressful life events (e.g. death, divorce, job loss)
  • Prolonged stress factors, including bullying, relationship problems, and unemployment
  • Stress resulting from prejudice/discrimination in LGBTQIA youth
  • Academic, financial, and/or relationship difficulties