Suicidal thoughts 10 times more likely in adults with Asperger’s

Posted on October 14, 2014

Recent findings highlight a staggering rate of suicidal thoughts among adults with Asperger’s syndrome.

The research team states in the journal Lancet Psychiatry that Asperger’s syndrome in adulthood is often linked to depression. So they set out to explore the extent of suicidal thoughts and plans in this group.

Compared with the general population, adults with Asperger’s syndrome were nearly 10 times more likely to report suicidal thoughts. They were also significantly more likely to have these thoughts than people with one, two, or more medical illnesses, or people with a psychotic illness.

Those with Asperger’s syndrome and depression were four times more likely to report suicidal thoughts and suicide plans or attempts than those with Asperger’s syndrome but without depression. Having a higher level of self-reported autistic traits was also linked to a greater risk.

Since suicidal thoughts were linked to greater Asperger’s traits, there may be a direct link between Asperger’s syndrome and suicidal behavior. This study highlights the need to develop appropriate psychological and psychopharmacological therapies.

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Source material from Psych Central