Higher rates of depression and victimization may be why, researchers say

September 15, 2017

FRIDAY, Sept. 15, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Transgender youth are more likely to have suicidal thoughts, a new study finds.

Researchers examined survey data from more than 900,000 high school students in California. They found that 35 percent of transgender youth said they'd had suicidal thoughts in the past year, compared with 19 percent of non-transgender youth.

The study appears in the September issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

"It is crucial that studies of adolescent health include measures of gender identity alongside sexual orientation to better understand and create programs to address the needs of these youth across the United States," study lead author Amaya Perez-Brumer, from Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, said in a journal news release.

Increased rates of depression and victimization among transgender youth partly explain their higher risk of suicidal thoughts, the researchers said.

"Like all students, transgender youth deserve to be safe and supported at school. These results show that reducing depression and victimization for transgender students should significantly reduce their suicide-related risk," study co-author Stephen Russell said in the news release.

More information

The National Center for Transgender Equality has more on transgender youth and students.

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