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AlcoholScience, Policy and Public Health$
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Peter Boyle, Paolo Boffetta, Albert B. Lowenfels, Harry Burns, Otis Brawley, Witold Zatonski, and Jürgen Rehm

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199655786

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199655786.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 23 June 2021

Alcohol and suicide

Alcohol and suicide

(p.190) Chapter 21 Alcohol and suicide

Alex E. Crosby

Victoria Espitia-Hardeman

LaVonne Ortega

Briana Lozano

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the link between alcohol consumption and suicide. Alcohol consumption is one of the most important risk factors for suicidal behaviour and its effect reaches across the range of demographics in US society. The Alcohol-Related Disease Impact system is one method of estimating the number of alcohol-attributable deaths (AADs) and years of potential life lost (YPLLs) due to alcohol. From 2001 to 2005, an estimated annual 79,646 AADs and 2.3 million YPLL were attributed to the harmful effects of excessive alcohol use. An estimated annual 7,266 AAD and 243,018 YPLL were associated with suicide specifically. Some theories point to alcohol as a moderator for suicidal behaviour due to its link with psychiatric illness, depression, social isolation, and other significant suicide-related risk factors. These ideas make alcohol-related interventions a valid target for suicide prevention and intervention measures. Clinical research shows that brief interventions in a variety of settings, such as primary care, emergency departments, prenatal care, criminal justice system, and college, can decrease alcohol consumption, and these work in a variety of populations — younger and older adults, men and women.

Keywords:   alcohol consumption, suicidal behaviour, suicide risk, alcoholism, alcohol abuse, suicide prevention, intervention programs

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