Year: 2023 Source: Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior. (2023), 53(3), 385-398. SIEC No: 20231363
Introduction Understanding adolescents' and emerging adults' help-seeking behaviors is important to curb suicidal thoughts and behaviors (STB), especially among racial/ethnic minorities who have some of the highest chronic rates of STB in the United States. Learning how diverse groups of adolescents seek help during emotional crises can help us understand the stark health disparities related to suicide risk and respond to them in culturally informed ways. Methods The study observed adolescents via a nationally representative sample (n = 20,745) over 14 years (National Longitudinal Study of Adolescents to Adult Health [Add Health]) to examine the association between help-seeking behaviors and STB. Longitudinal multinomial logistic regressions were run to assess for racial/ethnic and gender disparities. Results Help-seeking was not protective for Black female STB but alternatively was protective for each male group (non-Hispanic white, Black, and Latino). Latinas in their early-to-late 20s with no self-reported STB were at an extremely high risk of suicide attempts just 6 years later. Conclusions This is the first study to examine race/ethnicity*gender in six independent groups to assess suicidality longitudinally among a nationally representative sample. Tailoring existing interventions to meet the needs of growing and diverse communities is critical for suicide prevention programs and policies.