Top 10 Countries with the Highest Suicide Rates

Note: the numbers next to each country is the suicide rate – the number of people who commit suicide in a year out of every 100,000 people.

#10. Slovenia 21.9

As you’ll see throughout this list, communist countries don’t exactly keep their citizens happy.  Slovenia was annexed by the Axis powers in World War II, and became a founding member of Yugoslavia following the war.  When the country finally became independent and democratic in 1992, things began to improve.  The suicide rate declined and the economy picked up.  However, the global recession of the late 2000s hit Slovenia especially hard, and the European country’s progress was dealt a serious setback.  The struggling economy is likely the main reason Slovenia is still in the top ten.


#9. China 22.2

Suicide rates are hard to track in China, because the government likely lowers the numbers.  Several groups have conducted studies which place the rate closer to 30, which would put China third in the world.  But, we have no choice but to use the official statistics released by the Chinese government.  Female suicide rates actually outnumber that of males.  In fact, China has the one of the highest female suicide rates in the world. However, both genders feel the intense pressure put on them by society.  Another leading contributor is the horrendous work conditions in many factories.


#8. Latvia 22.9

On the surface, it seems there should be very little suicide in Latvia.  The country became independent from the Soviet Union in 1991, through a revolt so peaceful it is known as the “singing revolution.”  Following its independence, it posted the highest economic growth of all EU.  Even though the country was hard hit by the global recession, it has already recovered, and is Europe’s fasting growing country again.  So what leads to the suicides?  The country is still dealing with the after-effects of communism, and the government has been shown to be corrupt in several instances.  Women have also been largely discriminated against.


#7. Japan 23.8

The Japanese have had a long history of honorable suicides, going all the way back to the days of the samurais, and most famously including the kamikazes during World War II.  This still shows in modern times, as suicide is viewed as acceptable by the Japanese, and sometimes even honorable. Lately, the suicide rate has surged, as the depression rate has increased as well.  The loss of a job is listed as one of the highest reasons, and so is the factor of hardships in life.   Aokigahara is the most common location for suicides.  The forested area at the base of Mt. Fuji sees nearly 100 suicides every year.


#6. Hungary 24.6

Hungary may be in the top ten, but the country’s suicide rates have actually nearly halved since the fall of communism.  In 1984, Hungary had the highest rate in history with 46.1.  This is still a record to this day.  Its problems can be traced back to World War I, when the country, previously a powerhouse, lost 70% of its territory.  It was a Fascist regime until 1989, and since then, conditions have improved.  Now, Hungary is viewed as one of the economic powers of its region, and is one of the popular tourist destinations in the world.


#5. Belarus 25.3

Despite declaring independence from the Soviet Union in 1990, Belarus still has close relations with Russia, and President Alexander Lukashenko has gone against the people’s wishes since the independence, and continued the Soviet-era policies.  He has remained in power by violently intimidating his opponents, and oppressing the citizens of Belarus.  When that has failed, the elections have simply been rigged to keep Lukashenko in power.  No wonder Belarus has such a high suicide rate.


#4. Kazakhstan 25.6

A 70% Islamic nation, Kazakhstan has struggled since it declared independence from, you guessed it, the Soviet Union in 1991.  The country has only had one president in post-Soviet times, and President Nazarbayev wins his elections with 95% of the votes.  Sounds a little suspicious to me.  Despite calling itself a republic, Kazakhstan is known as an authoritarian regime.  The country’s economic progress was severely curtailed by the global recession in the late 2000s, and religious freedom has been practically removed from non-Muslims by the Kazakh government.


#3. Guyana 26.4

In Guyana, the leading cause of death for 15-24 year-olds is suicide, a shocking statistic.  The leading reasons are depression and domestic disputes.  In the eastern Berbice region, the rate is around 50, higher than any country in the world.  The government is taking steps to try and control the problem, with hotlines being installed on phones, and police trying to help prevent young adults from taking their own life.  Unfortunately, suicide is already synonymous with Guyana, after the 1978 massive Jonestown incident, where 914 people took their own lives, after being told to by Jim Jones.


#2. South Korea 31.2

The leading cause of death for those under 40 in South Korea is suicide.  The rate has doubled in the last ten years.  In 2009, former President Roh Moo-hyun committed suicide by jumping off a cliff, after being involved in a bribery scandal.  Many other famous South Koreans have committed suicide; including millionaires, pop singers, and professional soccer players.  Why does South Korea have such a problem with suicide? Nobody seems to have a definitive answer.  The economy is surging, compared to most other Asian countries.  Some suggest young Koreans are joining internet pacts, and it is a fad.  But that seems unlikely to affect the national suicide rate so drastically.


#1. Lithuania 34.1

And the dishonorable title of the country with the highest suicide rate in the world goes to Lithuania.  Yet another country to declare independence from the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, it has struggled to make the transition from communism to capitalism.  The suicide rate has doubled over the last ten years, and it has been described as an “epidemic.”  The economy isn’t a problem; its actually surging compared to other Baltic countries.  Locals say the government is doing nothing about the suicide rate, as a recent bill was shelved.  When citizens are caught attempting suicide, they are taken to hospital, but released that same night.  Often, they will go back and attempt suicide the next night. It seems that Lithuania’s problem is that they are just trying to ignore the suicides, and that approach obviously isn’t working.


  1. very sad. I feel like I dont want to live because of boredom. The world needs a social revolution -not to blame any body. People need to leave behind their pride, material and just love each other.

      • What an ignorant statment to make. With only looking at the top 4 countries here they are all predominantly religious. If you actually bothered to read properly you would see that under number 4 it states “A 70% ‘Islamic’ nation, Kazakhstan has struggled”. Number 3 is Guyana which is known is predominantly Christian and Hindu with less than 4 % being atheist. Number 2: More than 50% of South Korea are religious believing in either buddhism or christianity and lastly Number 1: Lithuania more than 90% of the people are religious! Do your homework before you blame atheism. Governmental factors are a huge reason but definitely not atheism.

      • South Korea is dominated by Christianity these days. You can hardly look out a window in Busan without seeing a cross and those who aren’t Christian still often practice Buddhism. Atheism is probably more commonplace in the USA still.

      • T another aspect of all these countries is that they have very little Mental Health services or even recognition and as someone else said hi numbers of atheists. Facebook page Suicidal Tendencies is a good site for those considering it. has profoundly insightful essay by a formerly suicidal person.

    • No it`s the loss of pride, the loss of goods and loss of an healthy Ego that are the cause. I killed myself because I was proud of what I`ve done. I killed myself because I earned a good living. I killed myself because I loved myself. Common…! If all you are is only for the betterment of the state and your life is nothing if it isn`t for the betterment of all and you need no applause, (recognition) for the good you did, cause that is only what is asked of you and that most be gratitude in it self..It kills to love everybody when Love is to be spend wisely on somebody.

  2. I feel sorry for people who live in these countries. Some people ended their own lives because of variety of social factors that causes deep stress. I hope there’s a way to help people cope with such pressure.

    • Why sorry it’s not coutry fault I live in Slovenia and it’s sill best country and I traveled a lot. And stop blaming communism if you did live in it. If you ask people now, 90% would say that those times were much better than now.

  3. Families and friends are supposed to support their friend/relative who recently experienced grief (natural emotion of loosing a close person) & some families don’t care if their children feel sad for they think that children are the same with adults. If the suicide rates go up. There will be traditions and habits of suicide

    • Yah, praying makes things all better. Just like when I prayed that my parents would get back together, oh wait! They didn’t.

      I’ll admit to being biased in thinking that praying/religion(of any kind) is more of a comfort and won’t help(on it’s own) in preventing suicide. People need to seek professional help or at least talk to someone.

      • There’s always someone to talk to. There are suicide hotlines people can call or they could just talk to someone they know like a friend of a coworker and maybe they can convince them to seek help.

  4. Total bs about Kazakhstan. Religious freedom has been removed mostly from muslims. Christians and jews are getting better every year. GDP growth is 9% for 2012. Not that bad, right?

      • You seem to believe that Atheisim causes a lot of suicides. Now, I can see your point but just because a country used to be Communist(many against their will)doesn’t mean it’s full of Atheist. Sure it’s probably less religious compaired to the U.S. but we’re one of the most religious country on the planet. It’s not fair to say that because they aren’t as religious as us(are you from the U.S.?)they’re atheist. In Lithuania, who is #1 on the list, around 77% of the population is Roman Catholic(acording to a 2011 census). So I’m curious how you would explain why a country that is more ‘religious’ then the others on this list has a higher suicide rate.

  5. As a Christian, if you commit suicide, you will go straight to hell. Please appreciate the fact that God gave you life and no matter the problem you are facing, someone is facing something worse than yours and he is still leaving so please do not commit suicide. I love you all. Stay alive.

    • “As a Christian, if you commit suicide, you will go straight to hell.”

      But really, if you die of natural causes, you’ll go to hell anyway, since hell = the grave.

      “No matter the problem you are facing, someone is facing something worse…”

      This can’t always be true. Perhaps there’s some sort of ‘misery threshold’ that those contemplating suicide reach, and finally broken when the final desperate leap is made. In this scheme, then, every person who commits suicide actually becomes the most miserable person in the world, right up until the moment they succeed. Besides, it’s not really the external conditions upon which suicide is predicated, though these might very well contribute. For those contemplating suicide, this same statement you make might be an even greater cause for despair–“Ah, so many other people in worse conditions than mine are ‘sticking it out,’ and ‘bearing it,’ there must be something wrong with me, I must be defective and weak compared to these people.” Right?

      Christianity doesn’t seem like much of a help. The idea that some celestial mobster is threatening to torture me for an eternity if I don’t pay my psychic ‘dues’ isn’t terribly reassuring. And what should be our incentives to live? “Don’t kill yourself, because if you think life is shit, wait until you see the afterlife?” Wow.

  6. Hungary was not a fascist regime but a communist one. In the german movie The Lives of Others it is mentioned that it used to be number one in the world.

  7. I am from Georgia and its an orthodox country , and we believe that the worst crime is suicide after which you can only go to hell. However in the last few years a lot of young people have been killing themselves which includes my friends brother. I think that we should apreciate the life god gave us and think about people who will be very sad if we die. So stay strong and have faith in future!

  8. The suicide shows the person is too weak to deal with his problems.
    The weakest die, the stronger ones carry on. That is the nature. What’s so sad about that?

    • Survival of the Fittest is a Corrupt Ideology. But your right on the part that people who commit suicide may be to weak and need to get stronger.

    • Sad because they leave behind families and friends. It affects them.
      And some people have problems far more complex than yours, problems you couldn’t even fathom. Some people were abused. Some have mental illness due to something in life. You know nothing and shouldn’t spew out garbage…but this is the Internet, so you’re free to do so. But, you really an arrogant idiot with no clue.

    • We are more than animals since the time of civilization, thus suicide is only unique to humans. This idealogy you pointed out, only works in a food chain, and that only works when a prey feasts on a victim.

    • Or ‘her’. While you are right on some levels you are being a bit unfair. It’s known that suicide runs in families so some people are more likely to commit suicide than others. And since it does run in families, that means that the ‘weak’ were able to have children which according to ‘Survival of the Fittests’ shouldn’t have happened.

      And what’s sad is that someone lost a person close to them because of a problem they could have fixed.

  9. Life is getting tougher and harder stress is making hard to live day to day be strong live within your means don’t worry what others are doing and be happy. Give and helpwhen you can

  10. I live in Lithuania and I can’t believe that we are in the first place. However, about the reasons why Lithuanian citizens commit a suicide: it isn’t because of a communism at all. Mostly it is because of a girl (that love…), loneliness and maybe they are just stupid. I’m not saying that communism is good thing (altought you are trying very hard to imply what a bad thing it is) but there is many other factories why people commit a suicide.

    And still can’t believe that we are in the first place…

    • If by chance you see this, I’d like to ask you questions/talk to you about Lithuania if you wouldn’t mind.

  11. If you commit suicide On the day of judgment ALLAH will ask you “Why you commit this sin the world was not enough to move other place”

      • We have insane people in the U.S. Why would you want a Muslim to speak for fanatical Muslims. Were you responsible for the the Colorado shooters at Columbine or the Theatre? Were you responsible for the Connecticut school shooter? Why do your citizens do that. Why do Christians kill doctors is America because you consider their actions sins? Why did the two Americans blow up the Government building in Oklahoma? In Christianity, why did Protestant Christians kill Catholic Christians in Ireland and Great Britian? Stop asking one Muslim why fanatics in his or her belief system do horrible things unless you will take responsibility for every bad thing an American or Christian does?

      • Same reason that Atheists ask the same questions… Atheists like Joseph Stalin, Pol Pot, Mao, Kim Jung Ill, Napoleon Bonaparte killed more than any Christian did at any time in history so you have no right to speak to any Christian about killing, your type was the master of the art.

  12. those who hold high places must be the ones who start to mold a new reallity closer to the heart ! I to have taken an overdose of klonopin and heroin a deadly combo, I was brought back to life. I do not like what the human race is doing as a whole, we are destroying our world, its sad because we could be so much more, I long to live in a star trek type society, where all greed has gone, money is no longer needed, most illnesses have been cured, people live just to better themselves through knowledge. Religions have long been forgotten. This planet will go on long after humans have killed themselves off, it will recover from our destructive activities. Its so sad because we may be the only intelligent race in our galaxy, I believe life in our universe is very common yet intelligent life is likely a very rare thing, I believe in our destroying our climate and likely ourselves we could be destroying a very precious thing. It all comes down to education and knowledge, if one knows how our world was created and how life came to be with no religion involved then we can change we can become a true space faring species and spread out making sure our species can survive into the far future, I long to know if our species will survive or will we go extinct like most of the species on this planet have. Its up to us and that is what worries me the most. thankyou for your time ! barry w. bruington

      • people are waking up….there are most people awake than sleeping. so i say let them sleep…no need to worry about what others think anymore, I believe. peace~

    • I should add that its true our sun will run out of fuel in 4 billion years but long before this happens our home star (sun) will begin burning helium as the hydrogen runs out, this will greatly increase our suns temperature, our oceans will boil away and life on the planets surface will become impossible. This will happen in a few hundred million years, a blink of the eye in cosmic time. If the human species does not start now while we have the recourses to do so which is learn to live off planet then we will likely become extinct, there may be millions of other intelligent races in our home galaxy and if we go extinct no one will know we ever existed. There will be evidence of our race on the moon long after we have gone extinct. One of the astronauts who walked on the moon wrote his daughters name in the dirt, this writing, the moon buggy,the foot prints,the american flag and any other junk left there will be there until our sun turns into a red giant and bloats up to the size of earths orbit eliminating all evidence of our race ever being here, to me this is so sad and does not have to happen, its in our hands but I doubt we will have what it takes to become a long lived space faring race.

      • The bible says that this earth’s days are numbered and it even describes the final days of earth’s existence. God is in control of this universe and human kind. He has an appointed time for it to end, a specific date in time that it will come to an end.

      • Oh, my comment wasn’t directed to you, I posted that a few months ago in reply to someone else. That’s really interesting about Switzerland, I’ll try to look into that, thanks for the info.

      • It woul be interesting to see what role genetics play in these statistics. When my teenaged son attempted suicide back in 2009, his doctor told us that clinical depression tends to run in families and untreated depression can lead to ssuicide (there have been 5 suicides on my maternal side of the family!) The United States has come a long way in recognizing and treating depression, but we still have a ways to go in education and removing the social stigma that goes along with the diagnosis!

  13. The comment below was written by a retard.

    “We have insane people in the U.S. Why would you want a Muslim to speak for fanatical Muslims. Were you responsible for the the Colorado shooters at Columbine or the Theatre? Were you responsible for the Connecticut school shooter? Why do your citizens do that. Why do Christians kill doctors is America because you consider their actions sins? Why did the two Americans blow up the

    Government building in Oklahoma? In Christianity, why did Protestant Christians kill Catholic Christians in Ireland and Great Britian? Stop asking one Muslim why fanatics in his or her belief system do horrible things unless you will take responsibility for every bad thing an American or Christian does?”

    Because Christians condem these actions. Muslims do not.

  14. I found this site when I was wondering about the suicide rate in the U.S. and wondered about the rest of the world. I don’t know about politics or religion, not sure why people do it, and I can’t speak for others just myself. I think from now on I will just take the time if I see someone that looks like they are having a bad day and just buy them a cup of coffee and maybe a simple pat on the back. maybe it won’t be enough but it is what I can do, at least it is something…….I just don’t know.

  15. I feel South Korea’s suicide is so high due to the copious amounts of pressure placed on the individuals. For example: the education system is one of the world’s most competitive – I’ve known some of my South Korean friends to be extremely depressed due to studying for over 13 hours a day.

    Korea culture also puts a lot of pressure in the workplace.

  16. Hi, I am student from Coursiera 🙂 and I have also chosen the GapMinder data base, and there I see that we have other numbers…Could you tell me the source of these information? 🙂 Thank you.

  17. my advice for those who want to find the purpose of life, Search Islam from muslim people, till when are you going to believe the media.

  18. What’s hurts me are the methods used by so many. If you have access there is a painless and peaceful way (displacing oxygen). I plan to use it when the time comes.
    Everyone needs to be wary of Anything that is high profile… This includes religions. Things of true value have been suppressed for the most part. Take “UFO”s as a prime example. This is coveted technology by the elites. It’s these same jokers who hired others to cook up religious belief etc.
    We need to find our own inner Self.
    It’s also too bad that there aren’t easier ways for folks from different countries to link up. I’m talking partnerships (if not marriage). But I suppose this might be crushing for some who went that route and couldn’t find anyone. I’m sure there are tons who’ve killed themselves that were very compatible for guys like myself.
    In the end tho we are on own own… So there is honor in suicide imo.

  19. First of all, I know its an old entry of Your blog, but still, I want to leave some notes here.
    Lithuanian data is kind of old. It is number of 2009, some sort of peak (probably caused by financial crisis). ’10 and ’11 numbers are 30,6 and 31,6 respectively.

    And the communism is not a reason itself. The main thing is that some people failed to adopt to new regime. When in soviet days everything is given to you, and only thing that controls your live and makes decisions is political party, and suddenly USSR collapses and citizens have to think with their own heads – they have no such a habit. This vacuum of decision making ability is what brings these numbers.

    And You can clearly see, that when regimes are changing, and nation has no tradition of free market, capitalism and full liberty – they tend to be desperate. Same goes to Japan after WW2 or Sout Korea.

    Have a nice day! 🙂

  20. Hey!

    I am from Lithuania but live abroad and I can say that #1 reason of suicide is that you are jobless and can’t find the meaning of life. I am jobless at the moment and I feel bad and have depressing thoughts. Here is an answer of question. Other reasons can be unlucky love, alcoholism but it also connected to same thing- no reason to live, no meaning.

    • Sorry for the late reply, somehow I didn’t see your comment. But thanks for commenting, I hope things improve for you and your country, best of luck, and thanks for the insight on depression in your country.

      • I am Lithuanian and I agree with stase’s opinion. It’s trully sad, that many Lithuanians do that maybe in the future this statistic will change, I hope so…

  21. someone should investigate the statistics in Switzerland. There are so many here because of boredom, money and depression. They send their people to psyco clinics over the border to Germany so it looks like it is that countries problem.

  22. In Spain suicides are 10-15 people every day, the last five years because the economic crisis the suicide is increasing day by day, and the goverment and tv are hiding the true like in Latvia.. with the official rate of unemployed in 28% (50% in some provinces) the suicide is the first cause of dead for men under 40, but this is not a real problem for the politics, bankers, speculators, freelancers who has the power here, they put us in this terrible situation, but they still living like kings, so.. let the commoners kill themselves and open another champangne bottle to celebrate it!!

    A dark future is coming for the common people..

  23. the biggest problem this world has sin we just call it big words like suicide but it is sin against for the biggest problem to face mankind GOD gave to us the greatest sacrifice to once and for all solve mans sin problem JESUS CHRIST.John3;16 GOD loves you.

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