Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology

, Volume 43, Issue 9, pp 752–757 | Cite as

Attempted suicide and associated risk factors among youth in urban Japan

  • Yasuharu HidakaEmail author
  • Don Operario
  • Mie Takenaka
  • Sachiko Omori
  • Seiichi Ichikawa
  • Takuma Shirasaka



Suicide is a major social and health issue in Japan. We assessed prevalence of attempted suicide and explored individual, interpersonal, behavioral, and psychological risk factors associated with attempted suicide in a general community sample of youth in a metropolitan Japanese city.


Survey of 2,095 participants age between 15 and 24 who were recruited using street-intercept techniques.


Overall, 6% of males and 11% of females reported a prior suicide attempt. For males, attempted suicide was independently associated with experience of school bullying, being homosexual or bisexual, history of drug use, experience of unwanted sex, history of a diagnosed sexually transmitted infection, and low self-esteem. For females, attempted suicide was independently associated with being younger (ages 15–19 compared to 20–24), experience of school bullying, history of drug use, and history of smoking.


Prevention intervention programs for youth in Japan are necessary to achieve national aims to reduce attempted suicides and suicide mortality.


Japan suicide mental health youth 



This research was supported by a Grant-in-Aid for AIDS Research from the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare of Japan in 2001 and 2002.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yasuharu Hidaka
    • 1
    Email author
  • Don Operario
    • 2
  • Mie Takenaka
    • 3
  • Sachiko Omori
    • 4
  • Seiichi Ichikawa
    • 4
  • Takuma Shirasaka
    • 5
  1. 1.Dept. of Global Health and Socio-epidemiologyKyoto University School of Public HealthKyoto-shiJapan
  2. 2.Dept. of Social Policy and Social WorkUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK
  3. 3.Center for Health and Rights of MigrantsOsakaJapan
  4. 4.Graduate School of NursingNagoya City UniversityNagoyaJapan
  5. 5.AIDS Medical CenterNational Hospital Organization, Osaka National HospitalOsakaJapan

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