Report: ER visits after suicide attempts by girls up 50% in Wisconsin

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “Hopeline” to 741741.
Published: Jan. 14, 2022 at 7:18 AM CST
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - An annual report by the Wisconsin Office of Children’s Mental Health indicates about 50% more teen girls ages 4-17 were treated in emergency rooms for suicide attempts last year, compared to 2020.

It’s a spike the director of the National Alliance for Mental Health of the Fox Valley said sadly, isn’t all that surprising as depression and anxiety rates are significantly higher for them than any other demographic.

“Mental illness. The impact comes often early on in life. And at that age, we’re so vulnerable and really, um, in need of support and help to identify those feelings” Maren Peterson, the executive director for NAMI of the Fox Valley said.

Data shows the number of boys treated for suicide attempts grew by roughly 4 percent.

During their virtual presentation of the report, Linda Hall, director of the Office of Children’s Mental Health, said at least one-third of Wisconsin’s young adults between the ages of 18 to 24 experience anxiety most days. The report also found 29% of Wisconsin high school students felt sad or hopeless. The findings are based on a survey from October 2020 to September 2021.

“The mental health needs in children were substantial prior to the pandemic and those needs have only grown, especially for those most isolated and vulnerable,” said Wisconsin First Lady Kathy Evers.

By continuing to have conversations, Peterson said we can better help children understand and work through their feelings, to stop suicide from being an option.

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, call the suicide prevention lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “Hopeline” to 741741.

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