Holiday suicide increase is a myth

Keith Morehouse, Director of clinical studies NWTH
Keith Morehouse, Director of clinical studies NWTH

By: Michelle Langowski
NewsChanel 10

Amarillo, TX - The idea that there are more suicides during the holiday season may be just a myth.

The holiday suicide myth has had amazing staying power...but despite the stresses during this time of year, December's suicide rate is not the highest.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - study after study shows no link between the holidays and an increase in suicide.

Director of clinical studies Keith Morehouse says, "the staying power of that particular issue really has been just a perception. When a suicide occurs on the holidays it is much more magnified because it is the holiday time when we normally focus on the good times and feelings around the holiday."

But this year could be different...Morehouse says nationwide we are already seeing an increase in suicides and depression.

"It always feels more intense because we have issues with families, a lot more stressors involved, especially now with the economic times being worse, we are having a lot more stress related to loss or perceived loss of income and that factors into a lot around the issue of holidays."

A concern about the prevalence of this myth is that it may make suicides look like an acceptable solution to a person's life situation.