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Bisexuals, Gays More Prone To Suicide: LGBQs More Vulnerable To Depression, Traumatic Distress

Update Date: May 07, 2016 07:00 AM EDT

A recent study which examined the pervasiveness of mental health indications suggested that members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and questioning (LGBQ) community are more vulnerable to depression and traumatic distress. Annie Shearer, a research assistant from the Drexel's Family Intervention Science program within the College of Nursing and Health Professions and her team published their findings in the Journal of Adolescent Health under the title, "Difference in Mental Health Symptoms Across Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Questioning Youth in Primary Care Settings," according to Medical Express.

Shearer and her colleagues screened the routine physician visits of more than 2,500 patients with ages between 14 and 24.  All the participants answered a behavioral survey tool created by Guy Diamond, Ph.D., director of the Family Intervention Science Program and a co-researcher of the study.

Every partaker of the survey was examined with regards to their depression, anxiety, traumatic distress, substance use and suicide ideation. All were also requested to reveal their preference of sexual attraction: gay, lesbian, bisexual or questioning.

At the end, it was analyzed that female bisexual and questioning people had greater marks for present-day suicide ideation - which indicates that they have held into consideration the taking of one's life.

"I think one point is important to point out: with the exception of lifetime suicidality, women who reported exclusive attraction to other women were actually no more at risk than women only attracted to men for depression, anxiety, traumatic distress, current suicidality or substance abuse," Shearer explained.

On the male side of the study, gay and bisexual participants had higher marks for depression and traumatic stress. Gay males specifically displayed an above what is the usual score for anxiety.

On the male side of the study, gay and bisexual respondents displayed significantly higher scores for depression and traumatic stress. Gay males also scored significantly higher for anxiety than heterosexual males.

"And with regard to questioning individuals, I think people assume that is a temporary identity, causing them to be overlooked, too. But during adolescence and young adulthood, when many individuals are still exploring their sexuality, it's particularly important to include both the bisexual and questioning groups," she added.

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