Adopted teens more likely to attempt suicide, U study suggests

Tyler Gieseke

Adopted teens are more likely to try and take their own lives than those who aren’t adopted, according to a recent University of Minnesota study.

 
Researchers involved in the study said parents of adopted children should be aware of the findings but not overly worried, Reuters reported.
 
“While our findings suggest that adoptees may have an elevated risk for suicide attempt, the majority of the adopted individuals in our study were psychologically well-adjusted," lead author Margaret Keyes, a University psychologist, told Reuters.
 
The research compared 692 teens who were adopted before they were 2 years old to 540 Minnesota teens who weren’t adopted, according to HealthDay News. Researchers interviewed the teens and their parents twice — at the start of the study and again after three years.
 
Researchers found that more than 8 percent of adopted girls and 5 percent of boys had attempted suicide compared to less than 2 percent of teens who weren't adopted, HealthDay reported.

 
Keyes told HealthDay that genes could play a role in the findings, since the biological parents of adopted children, in general, could have high rates of mental health issues. Another factor, she said, could be that it's more difficult for adopted children to adjust socially.