The Link Between Suicide and Substance Use Disorder

Suicirsz_istock_000001170662_largede is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States [1], but for people dealing with a substance use disorder, suicide risk is profoundly increased. In fact, those with substance use disorder face suicide as the number-one cause of death [2], making this population six times more likely to commit suicide than those without a substance use disorder [3].

Conditions that can flare or develop during a cycle of drug use are commonly depression and mood disorders, which are also the conditions that pose the highest risk for suicide. When an individual uses drugs and alcohol, emotions are intensified— positive feelings can bring a heightened euphoria while depressive feelings can bring intense despair. This mental state of dejection is what leads to the attempt or completion of self-inflicted death.

Interestingly, thoughts of suicide have also been seen to remain even after drugs have worn off. The effects of drug withdrawal may trigger suicidal thoughts due to the physical discomforts associated with withdrawal and depression caused by the depletion of “happy” neurotransmitters during an individual’s use.

Substance use can increase the risk of suicide in many different ways. There are different rates of suicide associated with specific drug use disorders, especially in regards to the use of opioids and alcohol.

  • Those with opiate use disorder are 14 times more likely to complete suicide [3].
  • Women with alcohol use disorders are 20 times more likely to complete suicide [3].
  • Men with alcohol use disorders are 4 times more likely to complete suicide [3].

Suicide prevention for someone with a substance use disorder begins with treatment. Gateway uses evidenced-based treatments to solve the underlying issues of an entire range of problems, including substance use disorder, depressive disorders, and suicidal ideation. Learn more about Gateway’s specialized co-occurring treatment programs at https://recovergateway.org/gateway/drug-rehab/Co-Occurring-Treatment/

 

[1] CDC Web Based Inquiry Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS), 2015.

[2] Center for Substance Abuse Treatment, 2008.

[3] The National Center for Biotechnology Information, 2015.

National Suicide Prevention Month in September: Suicide and Substance Abuse

In Honor of National Suicide Prevention Month in September and World Suicide Prevention Day on September 10th, Gateway aims to educate individuals on the relationship between suicide ans substance use disorders:

Article Written by Dr. Greg Tierney, Program Supervisor, Gateway Alcohol & Drug Treatment Centers

Suicide and Substance Abuse: Is There a Connection?

After depression, substance use disorders are the most common risk factors of suicide. Based on findings from psychological autopsies, 90% of those who complete suicide have one or more diagnosable psychiatric disorders at the time of death.

Roughly 1 in 3 people who commit suicide have substance use disorder.For those with a Substance Use Disorder, over 20% also have a diagnosed Depressive Disorder. The co-occurrence of these disorders relate to higher risk of suicide, greater functional impairment, and risk of having additional psychiatric conditions. The development and escalation of a substance use issue brings about consequences in all areas of an individual’s life.

Increasingly severe use of drugs or alcohol can cause losses such as losing a job, divorce, legal and financial problems, health issues, and others. Therefore, as a substance use issue becomes more severe, the rate of diagnosable Depressive Disorders increases significantly. Of the individuals entering substance abuse treatment, 40% have a Co-occurring Depressive Disorder.

Read Full Article at  RecoverGateway.org/Suicide

Did You Know? Insurance Carriers and Medicaid Now Cover Drug Treatment

insurance drug treatmentSince the Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) went into effect on Jan. 1 2014, all insurance carriers and Medicaid are required to cover the costs associated with treatment for substance use disorders on their insureds’ behalf. As a result, a significant financial barrier for treatment is now lifted for millions of Americans who deserve the chance to get life back on track.

If you know individuals who have been denied insurance benefits for substance abuse and mental health treatment in the past, please let them know the financial hurdle standing in the way of their recovery is no longer an issue.

Gateway Treatment Centers: More Convenient and Better Than Ever

While your life has experienced positive growth, so has Gateway! It was a very busy 2013, opening two new, state-of-the-art Gateway outpatient treatment centers and completing a major makeover at our Lake Villa residential treatment center.

Gateway Chicago River North: To better serve the needs of the Chicago area, a Gateway center specializing in Adult Outpatient Treatment is now located in Chicago’s River North district near the Merchandise Mart.

Gateway Swansea: In the St. Louis Metro East area, we relocated to Swansea from Belleville, IL. The center provides Outpatient Treatment for adults and adolescents in addition to family counseling and medication assisted treatment as part of an integrated approach to treatment.

Gateway Lake Villa: Last but not least, our Lake Villa residential center underwent major cosmetic renovations to provide a more comfortable, relaxed atmosphere for recovery. The renovated public spaces, corridors and guest rooms feature a soothing, natural palette. Lunge area updates included access to areas dedicated to studying, meditating and DIY laundry.

For more information about the programs offered at Gateway Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centers, call 877-505-HOPE (4673).

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