24-Hour Crisis Hotline: (877)SAFEGBC or (877)723-3422 Mental Health & Substance Abuse Issues

6502 Nursery Drive, Suite 100
Victoria, TX 77904
(361)575-0611
(800)421-8825

Child & Adolescent Development: Overview
Resources
Basic InformationMore InformationLatest News
Health Tip: Preparing Your Child For Sleepaway CampTips for Keeping Your Child Healthy at CampA Simple Way to Help Prevent Child ObesityType 1 Diabetes Might Affect Young Kids' Brain DevelopmentHow to Put Limits on Your Family's Screen TimeChickenpox Vaccine Shields Kids From Shingles, TooWhooping Cough Vaccine Effectiveness Fades With Time: StudyHundreds of Young Kids Drown in Pools Each Year -- Keep Yours SafeWhich Dogs Are More Likely to Bite Your Kids?Health Tip: Preventing Swimmer's EarAHA News: With Summer Vacation Here, How Much Screen Time Is Too Much?Health Tip: Prevent BullyingHealth Tip: Avoid Mouth Injuries in ChildrenKids Still Being Poisoned by Detergent PodsViolent Video Games, Unlocked Guns a Dangerous Combo for KidsWhy Some Kids With Eczema Are at Higher Allergy Risk'Controlled Burns' Better for Kids' Health Than Wildfires: StudyHow Kids Benefit From Doing ChoresAHA News: Report Seeks Answers About Mysterious, Dangerous Heart Disease in KidsKids of Opioid-Using Parents May Be More Likely to Attempt SuicideCholesterol Levels Improving Among U.S. KidsEarlier Bedtimes Help Kids Fight Obesity1 in 5 Kids Don't Strap on Helmets Before BikingParents, Here's How to Protect Your Child During Measles OutbreaksMore Than 600,000 Opioid Abusers Raising Kids in U.S.2 of 3 Parents Read Texts While DrivingFear of Dentist May Start Early for Minority Kids -- With Good ReasonMilitary Tourniquets Might Save Kids' Lives During School ShootingsE-Cigarettes Used in 5% of U.S. Homes With KidsMany Kids With Chronic Illness Are Still Happy: StudyDiet Sodas May Not Help Kids Cut CaloriesAsthma Inhalers Incorrectly Used by Most Kids in StudyNewer Diabetes Drug Shows Promise in Kids, TeensBenlysta Approved for Children With LupusParents, Protect Your Kids as Measles Outbreaks SpreadHow Much Does Your Kid Weigh? Chances Are, You're UnderestimatingFor Kids, Obesity and Mental Health Woes Often Go Hand-in-HandWhy Kids Should Play More Than One SportBetter Food Assistance Programs Might Lower Childhood Obesity RatesMany U.S. Kids Don't Drink Enough Water, and Obesity May Be the ResultStrict Blood Pressure Limits for Kids Tied to Heart Health LaterAlmost Half of Young Asthma Patients Misuse InhalersCan Games and Apps Help Your Kids Learn?Kids Can Get UTIs, TooInactive Lifestyle Begins as Early as Age 7: StudyWhy the HPV Vaccine Is More Important Than EverMore Time Spent in Sports, Faster Healing From ConcussionHow to Cut Your Kids' Sugar IntakeLiving Near Major Roads Can Slow Kids' Development: StudySuicidal Behavior Nearly Doubles Among U.S. Kids
Questions and AnswersLinks
Related Topics

ADHD: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Childhood Mental Disorders and Illnesses
Child Development & Parenting: Infants (0-2)
Child Development & Parenting: Early (3-7)

Kids of Opioid-Using Parents May Be More Likely to Attempt Suicide

HealthDay News
by -- Robert Preidt
Updated: May 22nd 2019

new article illustration

WEDNESDAY, May 22, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Children of parents who use opioids have more than double the risk of attempted suicide, a new study finds.

Researchers noted that along with a dramatic rise in suicides among young people in the United States in the past 15 years, opioid use among adults has spiked. This study suggests a possible link between the two.

"We theorized such a link was plausible because parental substance abuse is a known risk factor for suicide attempts by their children," said senior author Robert Gibbons. He directs the Center for Health Statistics at the University of Chicago.

"In addition, depression and suicide attempts by parents -- which are known to be related to suicidal behavior in their offspring -- are more common among adults who abuse opioids," Gibbons explained in a university news release.

He and his colleagues analyzed data gathered between 2010 and 2016 from more than 240,000 U.S. parents, ages 30 to 50. Half had filled prescriptions for opioid painkillers for at least a year; the others did not use the drugs.

The researchers also examined suicide attempts among more than 330,000 of their children over the same period. The young people were 10 to 19 years of age.

In this group of children, 678 (0.37%) of those whose parents used opioids attempted suicide, while 212 (0.14%) of those whose parents did not use the drugs attempted suicide, according to the study.

"These findings demonstrate that opioid use by a parent or parents doubles the risk for suicidal behavior by their children," said study co-author Dr. David Brent, a psychiatrist and chairman of suicide studies at the University of Pittsburgh. But the research didn't prove opioid use by parents caused this trend; it only showed an association.

"The epidemics of adult opiate abuse and child suicidal behavior appear to be linked, and the disturbing upward trends in mortality due to opiates and due to child suicide may have common roots," Brent added.

Researchers said the findings show the need for improved diagnosis and treatment of parents who use opioids, as well as mental health screening and referral to care for their children.

"These actions could help reverse the upward trend in deaths due to the twin epidemics of suicide and opioid overdose," Gibbons said.

The study was published May 22 in the journal JAMA Psychiatry.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on youth suicide.