A new study in Pediatrics, released on May 22, 2023, found that high school students who have depression think they have greater access to guns than peers who don’t experience this mental health risk for suicide. Guns are the most common method of suicide among teens. The new study asked about guns at home or elsewhere.
Questions screening for depression or suicidality found just under a quarter said yes to one or both. On guns:
- Around 1 in 10 overall own guns.
- More than 4 in 10 overall think they could find a gun.
- Roughly 1 in 4 teens with depression — but not suicidality when examined separately — thought they could get a gun compared to 1 in 5 without these conditions. “This finding may be skewed because it does not include those who had increased access and completed suicide,” the authors note.