Maurizio Pompili (1,2), Eleonora Piacentini (1), Marco Innamorati (3), Letizia Capezzali (1), Mariantonietta Milelli (1), Roberto Tatarelli (1) and David Lester (4)
(1) Sant’Andrea Hospital, Rome, Italy, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy; (2) Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA; (3) Università Europea di Roma, Rome, Italy; (4) The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey, Pomona, New Jersey, USA
Suicidal Behavior in Alcohol and Drug Abuse and Dependence. Hauppauge, New York: Nova Science Publishers, 2010, 540 pages.
The World Health Organization has declared that suicide is the third leading cause after car accidents and cancer among those aged 15-24. Suicide in youths has become a public health problem that remains unresolved. Several risk factors have been proposed by researchers, and substance abuse is one of the best known of these. Experimental analysis and psychological autopsy studies have demonstrated that alcohol and other illicit drugs are associated with suicidal behaviour. We are going to examine the relationship between suicidal and substance abuse behaviours, focusing on epidemiology, comorbidity and prevention programs.
Then we will analyze specific characteristics concerning the association between alcohol, cocaine, heroin and cannabis abuse and suicidal behaviours in adolescents.
Individuals with substance abuse disorder who attempt or complete suicide can be characterized as having mood disorders, stressful life events, interpersonal problems, poor social support, lonely lives, and hopelessness.
Results emerging from the literature confirm a strong relationship between suicide and substance abuse so that preventive programs may be based on risk factors associated with both suicide and substance abuse disorder. Management programs should combine different therapeutic strategies such as psychotherapy and pharmacological treatment.