Teen Suicide: Did You Know?

Local Statistics:

  • 1 in 4 high school students report feeling so sad or helpless in last year that they stopped doing regular activities
  • 1 out of 7 high school student report seriously considering suicide in the last year
  • Nearly 1 in 8 high school students made a plan on how to commit suicide in last year
  • 6% (nearly 1,000) of high school students report attempting suicide in last year. Each year, over 100 adolescents are admitted to hospital for suicide attempts
  • In past 20 years, 75% of adolescent suicides were among 15-17 year olds

Source: Knox County Health Department: Epidemiology Program. (2014). 2013 Youth Risk Behavior Survey Knoxville, Tennessee: Knox County Health Department.; Knox County Child Fatality Review data, 1996-2016


Myth About Teen Suicide

MYTH: Talking about suicide plants the idea in someone’s head.

FACT: Talking about suicide can actually open up communication about the topic and help someone in need.


MYTH: All teenagers are “hormonal” and this is just a phase.

FACT: Take any threat of suicide or self-harm seriously.


MYTH: Suicide only happens if a child is being bullied.

FACT: Though bullying can be a contributing factor, it isn’t always true.


MYTH: Teenagers who talk about suicide are just trying to get attention.

FACT: Someone who commits suicide usually talks about it first. Always take talk about suicide seriously.


MYTH: Suicide always occurs without any warning signs.

FACT: There are almost always warning signs.


MYTH: Once people decide to commit suicide, there is not stopping them.

FACT: Suicide can be prevented and most people don’t want to die, just to stop their pain.


Are you a parent? For information on talking to your teen able mental health and suicide, click here.

Other Resources:


East Tennessee Mental Health Association Website


Tennessee Suicide Prevention Network Resources


Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide: Talking to your Kids about Suicide

National Suicide prevention lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255), a free 24-hour hotline available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. Call is routed to the nearest crisis center to you.



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