Research may shed light on link between 'Suicide Belt' and elevation

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Before you go close icon
Higher Elevations May Increase Likelihood Of Suicide

Researchers in Utah believe they have shed light on a possible reason that a strip of states in the West have earned the the morbid nickname "The Suicide Belt."

Suicide rates in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming are nearly one and a half times higher than the rest of the country

Researchers from the University of Utah think thin air might be a factor.

In a study using lab rats, they found having lower oxygen levels results in low serotonin, which is commonly known as the the brain's "happy hormone." The lead author of the study notes rat brains are very different from human brains, and that the effect was seen only in female brains and not male. but despite those difference he still believes this finding could be a sign that elevation and depression are somehow connected.

According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the suicide rate in The Suicide Belt is roughly 18 for every ten thousand people, compared to the national rate of 12 for every ten thousand.

Suicide Deaths in the United States | FindTheData

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.

From Our Partners