Suicide in Canada

Learn about the impact of suicide in Canada and populations most at risk.

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Impact of suicide in Canada

Suicide impacts people of all ages and backgrounds in Canada.

Every year, approximately 4,500 people in Canada die by suicide,Footnote 1 which is equivalent to 12 people dying by suicide every day.

For every person lost to suicide, many more experience thoughts of suicide or suicide attempts.

Every day, more than 200 people in Canada attempt suicide.Footnote 2

For every death by suicide, at least 7 to 10 survivors are significantly affected by the loss.

Higher-risk populations

In Canada, the following groups have higher rates or risk of suicide:

Women have higher rates of self-harm. Self-harm can be a risk factor for suicide.

Thoughts of suicide and suicide-related behaviours are more frequent among LGBTQ youth in comparison to their non-LGBTQ peers. This refers to those who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, Two-Spirit or queer/questioning youth.

If you or someone you know is struggling with thoughts of suicide or suicide-related behaviour, help is available.

Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on suicide

Adults in Canada experienced increased suicidal ideation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Before the pandemic, in 2019, 2.7% of adults in Canada reported suicidal ideation. In spring 2021, this percentage rose significantly to 4.2%.Footnote 5 However, it will take time to understand the impact on the rate of deaths by suicide in Canada.

Suicide rates in Canada

The Suicide in Canada infographic will show you in an easy to understand way how widespread suicide is in Canada. The more you know about suicide, the more you'll understand why it's an important public health issue.

For more information


Footnote 1

Statistics Canada.Canadian Vital Statistics - Death Database (CVSD).

Return to footnote 1 referrer

Footnote 2

Statistics Canada. Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS).

Return to footnote 2 referrer

Footnote 3

Public Safety Canada. 2020 Corrections and Conditional Release Statistical Overview.

Return to footnote 3 referrer

Footnote 4

Mohan B, T. M. Suicide among First Nations people, Métis and Inuit (2011-2016): Findings from the 2011 Canadian Census Health and Environment Cohort (CanCHEC).

Return to footnote 4 referrer

Footnote 5

Liu L, Pollock NJ, Contreras G, Tonmyr L, Thompson W. Prevalence of suicidal ideation among adults in Canada: Results of the second Survey on COVID-19 and mental health. Health Rep. 2022;33(5):13-21.

Return to footnote 5 referrer

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