You are about to see 25 countries with the highest suicide rates in the world. According to the World Health Organization, every 40 seconds, a person commits suicide somewhere in the world. While most countries with high suicide rates are poor, there are also a surprising few, highly-developed and rich nations which rank very high in this sad statistics. Generally, committing suicide is about three times more common in men than in women. with poisoning, hanging and firearms being the most common methods. See which with countries have the highest suicide rates in the world and lets hope this trend ends.
Poland – 16.6 (30.5 men – 3.8 women)
In Poland, a Central European country with almost 40 million inhabitants, 16.6 out of 100,000 people commit suicide. Since the locals usually don’t leave suicide notes, it’s difficult to determine the most common causes of this travesty. But what we do know is that Poland has one of the widest disparities between the amount of men and women taking their own lives.
Ukraine – 16.8 (30.3 men – 5.3 women)
In recent years, the number of people who commit suicide in Ukraine has slowly decreased. However, Ukraine still ranks among the world´s most suicidal countries. Most of the suicides are attributed to personnel in the military where suicide accounts for up to 50% of all deaths. The most frequent suicide method is hanging followed by cutting and jumping from high places.
Comoros – 16.9 (24.0 men – 10.3 women)
Located between northeastern Mozambique and northwestern Madagascar in the Indian Ocean, Comoros is one of numerous African countries where people often tend to take their own lives. Due to a violent past full of civil wars and coups d´état, the country has been struggling with extreme poverty with about a half of its population living below the international poverty line.
Sudan – 17.2 (23.0 men – 11.5 women)
One of the largest African countries, Sudan is notorious for rampant ethnic strives, frequent human rights violation, an enormous crime and corruption rate and even slavery issues. With a legal system based on the Islamic Sharia Law, brutal methods such as stoning, flogging and crucifixion remain official and common punishments. Therefore, it may come as no surprise that, on average, 23 men and 11 women out of 100,000 Sudanese decide to end their lives voluntarily.
Bhutan – 17.8 (23.1 men – 11.2 women)
Famous for promoting Gross National Happiness as a government policy, Bhutan is a country that most people wouldn’t expect on this list. However, with 23.1 men and 11.2 women out of 100,000 committing suicide, Bhutan has a somber representation. It doesn’t help that the discussion of suicide and the means of tackling it are generally seen as a social taboo amongst the Bhutanese who mostly adhere to Tibetan Buddhism. Unfortunately, it’s often Bhutanese of Nepalese origin who significantly contribute to the regrettable statistic in this country.
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Zimbabwe – 18.1 (27.2 men – 9.7 women)
Severely affected by the consequences of Mugabe´s racist and Marxist policies, Zimbabwe is another African country where people live extremely hard lives. Tormented by hunger, HIV/AIDS infection and poverty, local people often find suicide as the only solution to their problems. Unfortunately, suicide attempts are nothing unusual even among their children and young students.
Belarus – 18.3 (32.7 men – 6.4 women)
In Belarus, an Eastern European country bordering Russia, about 2,000 people commit suicide every year, which is a higher number than that of road accident victims. In this country, the suicide occurrence is particularly high in rural areas and small towns. There’s also a statistics showing that the number of suicides correlates with the increase of alcohol consumption.
Japan – 18.5 (26.9 men – 10.1 women)
One of the most developed, modern and richest countries in the world, Japan has been struggling with an unusually high suicide rate for a long time. Suicide is the leading cause of death in men ages 20–44 with unemployment, depression and social pressure as key contributing factors.
Hungary – 19.1 (32.4 men – 7.4 women)
In the second half of the 20th century, Hungary had the highest suicide rate in the world. In the last decade, the number of Hungarians who decide to take their own lives has decreased but with more than 19 people out of 100,000 committing suicide, Hungary still ranks among the most suicidal countries not only in Europe but also in the world.
Uganda – 19.5 (26.9 men – 12.3 women)
Although the economy and living standards in Uganda, a landlocked country in East Africa, is not as desperate as that of some other African countries, the occurrence of suicidal behavior is enormous. Depression, general stress, interpersonal problems, unemployment, poor housing and health conditions are among the most common reasons for local people to end their lives.
Russian federation – 19.5 (35.1 men – 6.2 women)
In Russia, suicide has been a major long-term social issue. Since the peak of this phenomenon with around 40 suicides per 100,000 in the late 1990s, suicide has been steadily decreasing. However, the current average of almost 20 suicides per 100,000 inhabitants is still high enough to rank Russia as the country with the 15th highest suicide rate in the world. Heavy alcohol use is one of the key factors contributing to this sad statistic.
Turkmenistan – 19.6 (32.5 men – 7.5 women)
In Turkmenistan, a Central Asian country, suicides account for 2% of the total number of deaths. The number of people who commit suicide is higher than that of road accidents victims or people dying of some types of cancer. Although the country possesses large natural resources, its state-controlled economy is not efficient, causing extreme unemployment which is one of the major factors contributing to suicide.
South Sudan – 19.8 (27.1 men – 12.8 women)
About 2,000 people decide to voluntarily end their lives every ear in South Sudan, a Northeastern African country devastated by numerous internal conflicts and civil wars. According to WHO, displaced people, refugees, homeless, soldiers and war veterans are particularly vulnerable to suicide and there are many of such people in South Sudan.
India – 21.1 (25.8 men – 16.4 women)
The official estimates of how many Indians take their lives annually vary greatly but according to some sources, it might be as many as 200,000 people. In India, poisoning is the most common suicide method, followed by hanging and self-immolation. Almost half of the suicides committed in this country is motivated by family and health reasons. Until 2014, suicide was illegal in India and survivors would face jail term of up to one year.
Burundi – 23.1 (34.1 men – 12.5 women)
Located in Central Africa, Burundi is one of the poorest, hungriest and least developed countries in the world. Suffering from devastating warfare, corruption, hunger, poor access to education and totally insufficient health care, local people are prone to suicide. Out of 100,000 Burundian, more than 23 take their lives each year. Men commit suicide almost three times more often than women.
Kazakhstan – 23.8 (40.6 men – 9.3 women)
In Kazakhstan, a large country located in Central Asia, suicide is a common cause of unnatural death and a long term social issue. According to the 2011 report of WHO, of all the people reported dead due to suicide worldwide every year, 3.23% belong to Kazakhstan. In this country, suicide is a major problem especially among young people and students. It has the highest number of suicides among girls aged 15 to 19 in the world.
Nepal – 24.9 (30.1 men – 20.0 women)
Nepal, a little mountainous country in South Asia, has regularly been ranking among the countries with the highest suicide rate but there has been a new, unfortunate trend in the suicidal behavior in this country. In recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of suicide attempts among Nepalese women with 20 women out of 100,000 people killing themselves.
United Republic of Tanzania – 24.9 (31.6 men – 18.3 women)
Many of Tanzania´s 45 million inhabitants suffer from various major problems including poverty, hunger, violence, lack of health care facilities, spread of HIV infection etc., which contributes to the very high suicide rate in this East African country. Suicidal behavior is sadly frequent even among children and students who often try to take their lives due to family problems, stress, school failures and other reasons.
Mozambique – 27.4 (34.2 men – 21.1 women)
In Mozambique, a Southeast African country occupying over 800,000 square kilometers (310,000 square miles), more than 27 out of 100,000 local people decide to end their lives. Lacking sufficient medical care, the Mozambicans have one of the shortest life expectancy in the world. HIV/AIDS and other diseases also contribute to the extremely high suicide rate in the country with over 3,000 people killing themselves every year here.
Suriname – 27.8 (44.5 men – 11.9 women)
Suriname is one of only two South American countries that have ranked in this sad statistic. Populated by just over 570,000 people, Surinam is the smallest country on the continent but its residents suffer from numerous major social as well as economical problems. Poverty, domestic violence, alcohol misuse, high unemployment and other factors are among the reasons why more than 44 men and almost 12 women out of 100,000 Surinamese commit suicide every year.
Lithuania – 28.2 (51.0 men – 8.4 women)
With a suicide rate of 28.2, Lithuania is the most suicidal country in Europe and the fifth most suicidal country in the world. Suicide has been a significant social national issue in the country for decades with its peak in the late 1990s. Since then, the number of suicides committed every year has been slowly decreasing. Social and financial problems in Lithuania are considered major causes behind the high rate of suicide.
Sri Lanka – 28.8 (46.4 men – 12.8 women)
Sri Lanka, a little South Asian country and home to over 20 million people, ranks among the most developed countries in this list but it still has one of the highest suicide rate. Since Sri Lanka gained its independence in 1948, the number of people who commit suicide has been consistently increasing without any obvious causes. Hanging and poisoning are the most common suicide methods in the country.
South Korea – 28.9 (41.7 men – 18.0 women)
Boasting numerous world´s primacies including the fastest internet connection, super modern technologies, one of the world´s best education and health care etc., South Korea has a shockingly high suicide rate. All types of social pressure and family problems are the main causes of this phenomenon. Since access to firearms is restricted in South Korea, the most frequent suicide method is poisoning.
Democratic People´s Republic of Korea – 38.5 (45.4 men – 35.1 women)
North Korea, the northerly neighbor of South Korea, ended up even worse in this WHO statistics. The notoriously restrictive environment of the country, human rights violations, economic hardship and stress are among the main reasons why more than 10,000 North Korean people take their own lives every year. There have even been cases of entire families killing themselves to avoid punishments by the totalitarian regime.
Guyana – 44.2 (70.8 men – 22.1 women)
Guyana, a largely rural country at the northeastern edge of South America and home to about 740,000 people, has the highest suicide rate in the world, four times higher than the global average. Deep rural poverty, alcohol abuse and easy access to deadly pesticides seem to be the combination leading to the self-inflicted deaths of more than 44 out of 100,000 Guyanese every year. Guyana is notorious for the ritual mass murder-suicide in which 909 people died in 1978 but the current suicide rate has nothing to do with death cults.