Year: 2000 Source: Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., 2000. p.135-146 SIEC No: 20010028

Overall, substance abuse is found in 25-55% of suicides, a rate far in excess of its prevalence in the adult population. The deliberate dimming of critical consciousness leads to difficulty in making other choices. Impulsivity & risk-taking lower the threshold for suicidal behaviour. Substance-abusing women are less represented than among suicides in general. An important risk factor for suicide in this group is the superimposition of a major depressive episode. The most basic step in suicide prevention is treatment of the underlying psychiatric illness something which may be hard to achieve with regard to substance abuse. (52 refs)