09 July 2009

Wednesdays popular for suicides

Forget what you've heard about the Monday morning blues. A new study shows that Americans are most likely to commit suicide on Wednesdays.


Forget what you've heard about the Monday morning blues. A new study shows that people in the US are most likely to commit suicide on Wednesdays.

A five-year study, published in Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, found that nearly 25% of suicides in the US take place on Wednesdays, followed by Mondays or Saturdays, which were tied with 14%, MSNBC reported.

In South Africa the stats look different, according to an MRC report: the peak day of death for suicide is Monday (18,5%), followed by Friday (15,6%).

In the US study, researchers had typically considered Monday the day of despair. But now they theorise that the internet's ability to keep people feeling connected over the weekend may be responsible for the shift, making mid-week job stress more of a problem than weekend solitude.

"By Wednesday, the traffic has gotten to be too much, their co-workers are getting on their nerves and they can't figure out how they're going to make it to the end of the week," the report's lead author, Augustine J Kposowa, a professor of sociology at the University of California, Riverside, told MSNBC.

Also, contrary to earlier research that showed more suicides in winter and spring, the new study found almost no seasonal differences - a change that Kposowa also attributes to technological connectedness. Winter doesn't isolate folks the way it once did, he said.

He and his colleagues studied deaths among people age 18 and older from all 50 states from 2000 through 2004. About 30,000 people in that group took their lives each year on average, they found. – (HealthDay News, July 2009)

Read more:
Suicide warning signs


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Michael Simpson has been a senior psychiatric academic, researcher, and Professor in several countries, having worked at London University in the UK; McMaster University in Canada; Temple University in Philadelphia, USA.; and the University of Natal in South Africa.

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