New Mexico Has One of the Highest Suicide Rates in America, Here’s How to Help
Any time you hear about someone taking their own lives, it's tragic. Since 2021, over 48,000 people have committed suicide in the United States. Throughout the entire country, the state of New Mexico ranks at #4 amongst the states with the worst suicide rates: with a population of over 2 million, 25 people per 100,000 commit suicide. That's a total of 533 people a year. The 3 states higher than New Mexico are Alaska at 30.8, Montana at 32 & Wyoming at 32.3.
The New Mexico suicide statistics are astonishing...
According to NMIBIS, suicide was the 9th leading cause of death throughout the state (higher than how it was in 2021 according to the CDC). New Mexico has also seen a 50% increase compared to other states in the U.S.
The New Mexico Department of Health listed the common means of suicide in 2020, as well as the counties with the highest suicide rates:
- 10% of people died from poisoning,
- 26% died from hanging/suffocation
- and over half (58%) died from firearms
- The counties with the highest rates were San Juan, McKinley, and Bernalillo. NMIBS also states that Catron & Quay also have very high suicide rates.
There IS help for those who are in New Mexico
You are not alone if you're suffering from depression or anxiety; there are many organizations who want to help you if you live in New Mexico:
- The New Mexico Suicide Prevention Resource Center,
- The New Mexico Crisis Line, 1-855-NMCRISIS (662-7474)
- The New Mexico Department of Health has a whole list of various numbers you can call.
- AFSP New Mexico,
- Breaking the Silence New Mexico,
- And of course you can call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 988.
And make sure you know the warning signs when someone might be extremely depressed. The National Institute of Mental Health lists these as the most common signs:
- If they're talking about being a burden to others, they feel guilty or they're talking about wanting to die.
- Feeling a sense of emptiness, sadness, loneliness, hopelessness or an unbearable physical or mental pain.
- Extreme changes in behavior: they take up drinking or drugs, frequent mood swings, withdrawing from friends & family, or eating/sleeping less.
Asking for help does NOT make you weak. If you or someone you know needs help, there ARE people who can & want to help. Don't be afraid to say something.