Cybersuicide: review of the role of the internet on suicide

Cyberpsychol Behav. 2006 Aug;9(4):489-93. doi: 10.1089/cpb.2006.9.489.

Abstract

The internet as a widespread source of communication is already having a significant influence in medicine and psychiatry. Although the internet has great potential in psychiatric education, clinical care, and research, its impact on social issues should not be underestimated. Firstly, the internet as a means of communication may encourage suicidal behavior by depicting ways by which suicide may be committed. Secondly, some internet websites may discourage people with mental illness from seeking psychiatric help, condone suicide, and forbid entry to anyone offering to discourage users from committing suicide. However, the internet could be a resource to help a potentially suicidal person get help, and can be used to identify those at risk for suicide, communicate with them, and potentially prevent suicide. If used appropriately, the internet is a powerful communication tool that can be used to benefit suicidal patients.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Access to Information*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Communication*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Information Dissemination / ethics
  • Internet*
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / psychology*
  • Suicide / prevention & control
  • Suicide / psychology*