Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Teenage suicides in northern Sweden: an interview study of investigating police officers
  1. Per Lindqvist,
  2. Lars Johansson
  1. Department of Community Medicine and Rehabilitation, Forensic Medicine, Umeå University, Sweden
  1. Correspondence to:
 P Lindqvist, Örebro Regional Forensic Psychiatry Service, Eken, SE-701 85 Örebro, Sweden
 (e-mail: per.lindqvist{at}


Objective—To disclose recurrent, dynamic, and static factors in teenage suicide involving the suicidee, his/her family, and the community; and to investigate the feasibility of using police as informants for suicide studies.

Subjects—All deaths categorised as suicide 1993 through 1995 among teenagers in Northern Sweden (n=15).

Method—Semiqualitative interviews with police officers, and, when applicable, general practitioners. Police reports, necropsy protocols, medical records, and conscription data were also analysed.

Results—Most suicides occurred in rural and depopulated areas. In contrast to males, females often had a history of overt psychiatric problems with suicide attempts. At least two thirds of the suicides were planned.

Conclusion—Cultural and sociopolitical aspects are important in teenage suicide as well as gender differences. Police officers can provide essential information. Identifying teenagers at risk remains difficult, however, due to low baseline rates.

  • teenager
  • suicide
  • geographical patterns
  • interview study

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.