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Suicide Causes

Suicide Causes

by Kevin Caruso

Over 90 percent of people who die by suicide have a mental illness at the time of their death.

And the most common mental illness is depression.

Untreated depression is the number one cause for suicide.

Untreated mental illness (including depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and others) is the cause for the vast majority of suicides.

Also, some people are genetically predisposed to depression, and thus they may not appear to be undergoing any negative life experiences, yet still become depressed, and may die by suicide.

So, some people die by suicide because of a depression that was caused by genetics. You probably have heard about some indivuduals who died by suicide and did not exhibit any symptoms or appear to have any serious problems. In these cases, it is possible that the person had depression that occured because of this genetic factor.

It is very rare that someone dies by suicide because of one cause. Thus, there are usually several causes, and not just one, for suicide.

Many people die by suicide because depression is triggered by several negative life experiences, and the person does not receive treatment – or does not receive effective treatment – for the depression. (Some people need to go through several treatments until they find one that works for them.)

Some of the negative life experiences that may cause depression, and some other causes for depression, include:

  • The death of a loved one.
  • A divorce, separation, or breakup of a relationship.
  • Losing custody of children, or feeling that a child custody decision is not fair.
  • A serious loss, such as a loss of a job, house, or money.
  • A serious illness.
  • A terminal illness.
  • A serious accident.
  • Chronic physical pain.
  • Intense emotional pain.
  • Loss of hope.

  • Being victimized (domestic violence, rape, assault, etc).
  • A loved one being victimized (child murder, child molestation, kidnapping, murder, rape, assault, etc.).
  • Physical abuse.
  • Verbal abuse.
  • Sexual abuse.
  • Unresolved abuse (of any kind) from the past.
  • Feeling "trapped" in a situation perceived as negative.
  • Feeling that things will never "get better."
  • Feeling helpless.
  • Serious legal problems, such as criminal prosecution or incarceration.
  • Feeling "taken advantage of."
  • Inability to deal with a perceived "humiliating" situation.
  • Inability to deal with a perceived "failure."
  • Alcohol abuse.
  • Drug abuse.
  • A feeling of not being accepted by family, friends, or society.
  • A horrible disappointment.
  • Feeling like one has not lived up to his or her high expectations or those of another.
  • Bullying. (Adults, as well as children, can be bullied.)
  • Low self-esteem.

Again, the above causes may trigger depression, and untreated depression is the number one cause for suicide.

Know what the symptoms of depression are – you should review the information on the depression and suicide page of this website – and if you or someone you know is depressed, get help immediately.

And remember that any untreated mental illness, including depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and others, may cause suicide.

If you or someone you know is suicidal, please read the information on the home page of this website and take immediate action.

Thank you,

Kevin Caruso

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Disclaimer and Terms of Use: is provided for informational and educational purposes only; is not intended to diagnose or treat suicidal individual; and is not intended to constitute medical advice. While care has been taken in the preparation of the information contained on, all information is provided on an "as is" basis without any representation, warranty or condition, whether express or implied, statutory or otherwise, as to: quality; accuracy; completeness; legality; reliability; efficacy; or fitness for any particular purpose. Anyone using this information does so at his or her own risk, and by using such information agrees to indemnify and its content providers from any and all liability, loss, injury, damages, costs and expenses (including legal fees and expenses) arising from such person's use of the information and resources on this website. Anyone who is suicidal should call 911 now and receive help from trained mental heath professionals.