Year: 2003 Source: Social Science & Medicine, v.57, no.7, (October 2003), p.1183-1194 SIEC No: 20070020

Patterns of young adult suicide in England & Wales between 1981-1998 in relation to rurality were examined. Two complementary population-based indices of rurality – population density & population potential – were used. Over the years studied, the most unfavourable trends in suicide in 15-44-year-olds generally occurred in areas remote from the main centres of population; this effect was most marked in 15-24-year-old females. Observed patterns were not explained by changes in age- & gender-specific unemployment, socio-economic depreviation or social fragmentation. The mental health of young adults or other factors influencing suicide risk may have deteriorated more in rural than urban areas in recent years. (43 refs.)