Suicide occurs throughout the world, affecting individuals of all nations, cultures, religions, genders, and classes. Earlier this September, LRT.lt reported that the number of suicides in Lithuania has almost halved over the last seven years, according to the Institute of Health. Its data shows that there were 30.84 suicides per 100,000 inhabitants in 2015, and 18.6 in 2022. It had been the highest in the EU and the second highest among the members of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development or OECD (after South Korea, where suicide among the elderly is a significant factor).
“Suicide is a global public health problem. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), about 800,000 people die every year because of suicide” the report said. At a press conference organized by Vilnius Municipality’s public health bureau prior to World Suicide Prevention Day on September 10, psychotherapist Paulius Skruibis said that significant changes have been taking place in Lithuania since 2000 when there were 45 suicides per 100,000 people.
Experts also note that the gap between male and female suicide rates is narrowing, but men are still four times more likely to take their own lives. Suicides among men accounted for more than a quarter of all deaths from external causes in Lithuania last year.
Total suicide and firearm suicide rates per 100,000 population vary considerably from one country to another. Canada’s total suicide rate of 12.9 is similar to Australia (12.7), Norway (12.3), and the United States (11.5). Highest in 2019 was Lesotho (72.4), Russia was tenth at 25.1. The world’s lowest suicide rates are in Antigua and Barbuda at 0.4, with Jordan at 1.6, and the Philippines at 2.2.