Lockdowns Causing Skyrocketing Suicide Rates In Texas – ‘It’s Been Alarming’


The feeling inside the psychiatry department of Cook Children’s Medical Center has, in recent months, been one of alarm.

Mental health professionals at the Fort Worth hospital got into the field because of their desire to help adolescents and their families, giving them constructive ways to deal with emotions, Dr. Kia Carter told the Star-Telegram on Thursday. But as the hospital’s numbers for adolescent suicides and suicide attempts have reached levels not seen in the past, “it’s been alarming for us,” admitted Carter, the co-director of psychiatry at Cook Children’s. Staff have wondered, she said, what more they can do to curb a growing problem, fueled by COVID and increased isolation.

Seven patients died by suicide in 2020, compared to two in 2019 and one in 2018, according to data provided by the hospital. The numbers of patients treated for suicide attempts at the hospital have similarly increased over the past year, and skyrocketed in the beginning of 2021, data shows.

In January, 40 children were admitted to Cook Children’s after attempting suicide, which is double the total from January 2020. Thirty-five children attempted suicide in February, compared to 22 one year earlier. Forty-three children attempted suicide in March, a record high and almost 20 more than March 2020.

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