Women Vets Face Greater Risk of Suicide

by Liz Colville

A new study suggests that women vets are almost three times as likely to commit suicide as their male counterparts, despite the fact that many of the vet suicides we read about in the news seem to have been committed by men (see this article from the Bay Citizen on vet deaths). The risk decreases with age, with women aged 18 to 34 having the highest risk, followed by women 35 to 44 and women 45 to 64. The research was conducted on vets who committed suicide between 2004 and 2007. The authors note that the majority of the women asked during their last mental health visit whether they were having suicidal thoughts said they weren’t. So one of the issues now, they say, is finding out how to better “facilitate communication of suicidal thoughts when they are present.”

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