Pridmore, W and Pridmore, S, Suicide is not the exclusive domain of medicine, American Journal of Medical Research, 3, (1) pp. 174-187. ISSN 2334-4814 (2016) [Refereed Article]
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Background: In the West, beginning in the early 19th century, the belief was published that suicide was always, or almost always, the result of a mental disorder (a medical problem). This belief became established wisdom when psychological autopsies commenced in mid-20th century. However, should this belief be inaccurate, our suicide prevention strategies, which are currently medically orientated, need to change.
Aim: To argue the case that metal disorder is not always, or almost always, the cause of suicide, and that suicide may be triggered by a host of other factors.
Method: The scientific basis of psychological autopsies and the practice of medicalization were explored. The opinions of non-medical experts were explored, including philosophers, historians, sociologists, economists and ethicists, among others. Epidemiology of rates in different countries and gender differences were examined for evidence.
Conclusion: Suicide is not exclusively a medical problem. While suicide is more common in people who have a mental disorder than people without a mental disorder, mental disorder is not a necessary condition. Thus, open discussions about the nature and causes of suicide are required, with a view to involving experts from a range of fields, and the general community, in developing and funding suitable prevention strategies.
|Item Type:||Refereed Article|
|Keywords:||suicide, suicide prevention, major depressive disorder, medical ethics, medical sociology|
|Research Division:||Health Sciences|
|Research Group:||Health services and systems|
|Research Field:||Mental health services|
|Objective Group:||Public health (excl. specific population health)|
|Objective Field:||Mental health|
|UTAS Author:||Pridmore, S (Professor Saxby Pridmore)|
|Downloads:||118 View Download Statistics|
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