Most Suicides Occur Outside Holidays

Friday, December 30, 2016

It is popularly believed that most suicides take place during December. National suicide statistics have shown this to be a myth. Despite efforts, including a report from the Annenberg Public Policy Center, to correct it, this misperception persists in media accounts every year at this time.

Montgomery County data on suicides for all age groups for the years 2008-2015 show that most such deaths occurred in June and July and to a lesser extent in April and October, with December being a month with fewer suicides. County data on suicides among those under 20 years of age in 2008-2015 show youth suicides peaked in September and October and that there were far fewer suicides involving young people in November and December than in autumn months.

While suicides do not increase at this time of year the same cannot be said for suicidal behavior. Calls and referrals to the MCES Crisis Center involving suicidal ideation, suicide threats, and attempts remain heavy at this time of year.