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Attitudes Towards Suicide in Alcohol and Drug Abusers Vaiva Klimaitė SUMMARY

Research problem. Suicide risk depends on various social, biologic, psychological factors, mental illnesses,attempted suicides, alcohol and drug use disorders. In Sweden, 47% suicide attempters used alcohol and/or drugs intensively or were depended on it in their past (Ingvar et al., 1997). Attitudes towardssuicide may also have impact on suicide risk. The attitudes towards suicide in alcohol and drug abusers may make influence to their suicide attempts: greater tolerance of suicidal behaviour canenhance the probability of it (Žemaitienė, 2000); Research purpose. To compare attitudes towards suicide in drug and alcohol abusers, to ascertain if attitudes towards suicide allow forecast suiciderisk of substance abusers. Research methods. 121 respondents took part in this research. They were divided into two groups: alcohol abusers (N=74) and drug abusers (N=47). All the respondents inthe time of research were hospitalized in Vilnius Center for Addictive Disorders department of Treatment of the Withdrawal Syndrome. All the respondents filled up a questionnaire of AttitudesTowards Suicide (ATTS). The questionnaire was given to them directly or by their doctor. Results. Results of the research showed that alcohol abusers are more inclined to condemn suicidal behaviourand had three times less suicide attempts then drug abusers. It was also ascertained that suicide risk is concerned with attitudes towards suicide: there is the relation between greater rate ofsuicide risk and stronger acceptability of suicide, weaker condemnation of suicide and tendency to relate reasons of suicide with loneliness. The suicide risk of alcohol abusers can be foreseen bystronger acceptability and weaker condemnation of suicide. Greater acceptability of suicide and tendency to relate reasons of suicide with loneliness allows forecast suicide risk of drug abusers.

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