Suicidal Behaviors Among Ukrainian College Students: the Role of Substance Use, Religion, and Depression

Viktor Burlaka, Jun Sung Hong, Oleksii Serdiuk, Liudmyla Krupelnytska, Svitlana Paschenko, Nariman Darvishov, Iuliia Churakova

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Early adulthood is a critical life period associated with increased suicide risk. The present study used a sample of students from ten Ukrainian public universities (N = 1005). Participants were 17 to 24 years of age (M = 19.19, SD = 1.99). The prevalence of lifetime suicidal ideation was 26.13% and 5.45% of participants reported a lifetime suicide attempt. Participants were more likely to report higher lifetime suicidal ideation if they had higher rates of alcohol and marijuana use, have met a clinical cutoff point for depression and were older, females, and not affiliated with any religion. The lifetime suicide attempt was associated with clinical levels of depression, increased marijuana use, and non-religious affiliation. These results suggest that mental health, alcohol and cannabis use can increase the risk of suicidality while religious affiliation might be an important protective mechanism for Ukrainian young adults at risk for suicidal behaviors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2392-2406
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Mental Health and Addiction
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.


  • College students
  • Mental health
  • Religiosity
  • Substance use
  • Suicidality
  • Ukraine


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