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Health Indicator Report of Mental Health - Youth Attempted Suicide

In NM in 2015, suicide was the leading cause of death, tied with unintentional injuries, for youth between the ages of 15 and 19. In the U.S. in 2015, according to the CDC, suicide was the second leading cause of death for this same age group. While girls are more likely than boys to attempt suicide, boys are more likely to die of suicide. A previous suicide attempt is among the strongest risk factors for completed suicide.
In 2017, the prevalence of past year suicide attempt was significantly higher in New Mexico (9.9%) compared to the U.S. (7.4%). The prevalence of past year suicide attempts among NM high school students decreased significantly in 2007 from 14.3% and has remained relatively stable since then. The US prevalence has remained relatively stable since 2009.


The NM Youth Risk and Resiliency Survey (YRRS) is administered in odd years and is part of the national Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS), which is coordinated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Each state, territorial, tribal, and large urban school district participating in YRBS employs a two-stage, cluster sample design to produce a representative sample of students in grades 9-12 in its jurisdiction. In the first sampling stage, in all except a few sites, schools are selected with probability proportional to school enrollment size. In the second sampling stage, intact classes of a required subject or intact classes during a required period (e.g., second period) are selected randomly. All students in sampled classes are eligible to participate. A weight is applied to each student record to adjust for student nonresponse and the distribution of students by grade, sex, and race/ethnicity in each jurisdiction.

Data Sources

  • New Mexico Youth Risk and Resiliency Survey, New Mexico Department of Health and Public Education Department.
  • U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) High School Youth Risk Behavior Survey Data

Data Interpretation Issues

Rates for 2001 and 2003 are based upon a different sampling methodology than for the years 2005-2017. Since 2005, the NM sampling methodology was consistent with the methodology recommended by CDC and was consistent with other states participating in the YRBSS. The questionnaire item was identical to that used by the national YRBSS questionnaire and other participating YRBSS states' questionnaires. For more information, see "2015 NM-YRRS Survey Results Report: Mental Health and Related Behaviors", available at


Percentage of students grades 9-12 in a NM public school who reported attempting suicide at least one time, in the past 12 months.


Number of students who answered, "1 time", "2 or 3 times", "4 or 5 times", or "6 or more times", to the question, "During the past 12 months, how many times did you actually attempt suicide?"


Total number of respondents who answered the question, "During the past 12 months, how many times did you actually attempt suicide?"
Page Content Updated On 12/27/2018, Published on 02/13/2019
The information provided above is from the New Mexico Department of Health's NM-IBIS web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: "Retrieved Thu, 05 August 2021 from New Mexico Department of Health, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site:".

Content updated: Wed, 13 Feb 2019 12:29:11 MST