Suicide by Firearm Among Women Across the Age Span: Findings from the National Violent Death Reporting System

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Suicide by Firearm Among Women Across the Age Span: Findings from the National Violent Death Reporting System

Category: Suicide, Women|Journal: Innovation in Aging (full text)|Author: C Leung, M Kaplan|Year: 2018

The growing number of firearm suicides in women is a cause for concern. The purpose of this study is to evaluate recent trends and factors associated with suicide by firearm among young (20–44 years), middle-aged (45–64 years) and older (65 years and older) women. Data were obtained from the 2006 to 2015 National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS) Restricted Access Database. Age-stratified multiple logistic regression was performed to identify the demographic characteristics and precipitating circumstances associated with the use of firearms among female suicide decedents. The findings show that previous suicide attempts, current depressed mood, and intimate partner problems were more common in younger and middle-aged women who used firearms, whereas health problems were more prevalent in older women. Addressing the precipitating circumstances across age groups may assist in the design of more effective preventive interventions. A discussion of the strengths and limitations of the NVDRS will also be presented.

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