Monday, November 23, 2015

Recession and suicide in the UK

Recently, a study was published mentioning the UK financial situation and suicide rate.

Universities of Bristol, Manchester, and Oxford estimated that 1,000 extra suicide occurred due to an economic depression in recent years. Indeed, the number of suicide in men was increasing for these some years in the UK.

The Guardian: Austerity a factor in rising suicide rate among UK men – study

It is well known that financial issues are relevant to the mental health. There is a word “depression,” expressing both economic downturn and lowered mental activity.

In the recession, the suicide rate in men tends to be elevated. It suggests that men are more likely to be influenced by the social atmosphere because they have to earn money for their family.

The situation is similar in Japan. In 1999, the suicide rate was rocketed, following the bankrupts of some major domestic companies. However, such social events hardly influenced women’s suicide rate.

Is austerity adverse for the human’s mental health? The answer is maybe yes. Greek are also suffering from elevated suicide rate after the beginning of austerity. However, it is often inevitable for the government to progress the austerity policy. If the government fails to compress the amount of national debt, it will be another cause of suicides.

My past entry: Suicide in Greece

In Japan, the suicide rate is gradually decreasing for a couple of years. The reason is not clear. Some people insist that Abenomics, the new economic policy of Abe administration, worked effectively. But others think it attributes simply to the change in population demographics.

My past entry: Reduction of suicide in 2012 in Japan

Anyway, the change of suicide rate in the UK seems not so dramatic compared to that in Japan. I think it is doubtful that austerity is the main reason for raised suicide rate in the UK.

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