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A Systematic Review of the Antecedents and Prevalence of Suicide, Self-Harm and Suicide Ideation in Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Youth

1
School of Arts and Humanities, Division of Psychology, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup 6027, Australia
2
Division of Psychology & Mental Health, University of Manchester, Manchester Academic Health Sciences Centre, Manchester M13 9PL, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(17), 3154; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16173154
Received: 19 June 2019 / Revised: 23 August 2019 / Accepted: 27 August 2019 / Published: 29 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Suicide: Prevention, Intervention and Postvention)
Suicide and self-harm represent serious global health problems and appear to be especially elevated amongst indigenous minority groups, and particularly amongst young people (aged 24 years or younger). This systematic review investigates for the first time the antecedents and prevalence of suicide, self-harm and suicide ideation among Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth. Web of Science, PubMed, PsychINFO, CINAHL databases and grey literature were searched from earliest records to April 2019 for eligible articles. Twenty-two empirical articles met the inclusion criteria. The data confirmed that indigenous youth in Australia have elevated rates of suicide, self-harm and suicidal ideation relative to the nonindigenous population. Risk factors included being incarcerated, substance use and greater social and emotional distress. Notably, though, information on predictors of suicide and self-harm remains scarce. The findings support and justify the increasing implementation of public health programs specifically aimed at tackling this crisis. Based on the review findings, we argued that Aboriginal communities are best positioned to identify and understand the antecedents of youth self-harm, suicide ideation and suicide, and to take the lead in the development of more effective mental health preventive strategies and public policies within their communities. View Full-Text
Keywords: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth; suicide; self-harm; suicide ideation; systematic review Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth; suicide; self-harm; suicide ideation; systematic review
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Dickson, J.M.; Cruise, K.; McCall, C.A.; Taylor, P.J. A Systematic Review of the Antecedents and Prevalence of Suicide, Self-Harm and Suicide Ideation in Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Youth. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 3154.

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