Major demographic, social and economic factors associated to suicide rates in Latvia 1980-98

Acta Psychiatr Scand. 2001 Apr;103(4):275-81. doi: 10.1034/j.1600-0447.2001.00007.x.


Objective: The aim of this study is to analyse the dynamics of suicide rates in Latvia 1980-98, when dramatic social and economical changes took place. Special attention is given to demographic risk groups and major socioeconomic correlates influencing the dynamics of suicide rates.

Method: Descriptive statistics of suicide rates and major social and economical correlates.

Results: During 1980-98 there were rapid swings of suicide rates. The increase was generated mainly by males reaching a maximum of 72 per 100 000 population in 1993. The sudden drop in gross domestic product, the rapid increase in first-time alcohol psychosis and the percentage of people unemployed did not correspond strictly with the dynamics of suicide rates.

Conclusion: Demographic and socioeconomic factors could not explain sufficiently the rapid changes in suicide rates in Latvia during the years 1980-98; psychological factors also have to be considered.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Demography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Latvia / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Rural Population / statistics & numerical data
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Suicide / statistics & numerical data*
  • Urban Population / statistics & numerical data