Occupational activities are usually considered as a source of personal development and economic growth of nations, yet it has been observed that certain occupations are associated with a fairly high rate of mortality due to emotional and psychological stressors leading to suicide. Research and clinical data suggested that certain occupations especially in healthcare sector (like doctors and nurses) along with veterinarians are among the most common professionals who commit suicide learn about the professions associated with highest suicide rates for both male and female.
Professions Associated with Highest Suicide Rates
So far there are no clear guidelines or well defined risk factors that may suggest how certain occupations are associated more with occupation associated suicide. Moreover, no national level study has been conducted that can identify or highlight this risk more carefully, yet some local studies as well as assumptions made from general and official statistics suggested following occupations reportedly have a higher suicide rate.
1. Physicians Among the Top Suicidal
A number of studies suggested that physicians have a higher rate of attempting and committing suicide. In general population, the overall prevalence of suicide is 1-2%; however, in physicians this rate can be as high as 2- 4%. But it should be remembered that the other 96 to 98% have a very healthy and productive lifestyle with overall better quality of life than general population.
The most significant determinants are: availability and access to highly lethal drugs in sufficient quantities; knowledge about the toxic or lethal dose that make more attempts successful.
The rate of female physician suicide is equal to male physician suicide as opposed to general population in which females are four times less likely to attempt suicide. The causes include psychological stressors, work load, stressful working conditions, higher chances of sexual harassment and other similar factors. Likewise, female physicians also feel “more deprived” of their family time and other social activities that may lead to depression.
2. Studies from National Occupational Mortality Surveillance (NOMS)
NOMS (or National Occupational Mortality Surveillance) employ PMR database that collects, organize and integrate the mortality information according to 3 primary age groups (ranging from group I that include individuals from 15-54 years; group II that includes 15-64 and group III with individuals above the age of 65 years. The age-specified data is the organized according to the gender, racial factors, occupations (with a list of over 500 occupations), and industries (over 300).
Various summary statistical tables are available on the website of National Occupational Mortality Surveillance; however, special information can also be ordered by placing the inputs to generate individual analysis. Below are the results:
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