Children As Young As Six Attempted Suicide

A study has found that children as young as six have tried to take their own lives. The details of the study will be presented at a conference in Killarney, Co Kerry.

The study covers 439 young people who presented themselves as a result of deliberate self-harm at Crumlin Children’s Hospital and Temple Street Hospital in Dublin between 1994 and 2006. Around 10% of them were under 11, the oldest was 17 the youngest was just six years old.

The majority had overdosed on drugs, usually paracetamol. More than half said they wanted to die and almost a third had made a previous suicide bid.

The study’s authors are describing as ‘unexpected’ the fact that a child as young as six had self harmed, as suicidal behaviour normally does not appear until the teenage years.