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Can J Psychiatry. 2010 May;55(5):274-81.

Immigration and suicidality in the young.

Author information

1
Schneider Children's Medical Center of Israel, Petah Tikva, Israel. b_cendrine@bezeqint.net <b_cendrine@bezeqint.net>

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Little research has focused on the relation of immigration and suicidal behaviour in youth. Nevertheless, the impact of migration on the mental health of youth is an issue of increasing societal importance. This review aimed to present studies on the prevalence of suicidal behaviour in immigrant youth in various countries and to provide possible explanations for suicidal behaviour in immigrant youth, especially regarding acculturation.

METHODS:

The review included a literature search to locate articles on the subject of suicidal behaviour in immigrant youth in the context of acculturation.

RESULTS:

Studies on suicidal behaviour in culturally diverse youth are few and most of the existing research does not differentiate ethnic minorities from immigrants. Studies on epidemiology and on specific risk factors were found regarding various immigrant youth including Hispanics in the United States, Asians in North America and Europe, as well as comparative studies between different immigrant groups in specific countries.

CONCLUSIONS:

The relation between immigration status and suicidal behaviours in youth appears to vary by ethnicity and country of settlement. Time spent in the new country as well as intergenerational communication and conflicts with parents have, in many of the studies, been related to suicidality in immigrant youth. Summing up, there is a clear and urgent need to further pursue the work in this field, to develop targeted public health interventions as well as psychosocial treatment for preventing suicide in these youth.

PMID:
20482953
DOI:
10.1177/070674371005500502
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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