South Dakota Suicides at an all time high

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The number of suicides in South Dakota increased to an all-time high last year, while calls to a suicide prevention help line have also climbed dramatically, according to state officials. The South Dakota Department of Health reported 192 suicide deaths in 2017, a 36 percent increase from 2014 and the highest number ever recorded in the state. Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in South Dakota and the second most common cause of death for young people ages 15 to 24, according to data collected by state health officials. The suicide rate increase can’t be attributed to a single reason, though risk factors include mental health, substance abuse and problems at work or with personal relationships, said Josh Clayton, the state’s epidemiologist.