Acculturation and suicide-related risk in ethnoracially minoritized youth in the US: a scoping review and content analysis of the empirical evidence
Final Published Version
Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology
Among Asian-American/Pacific Islander, Hispanic/Latinx, and Black youth, the US born have higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behaviors (attempts and death-by-suicide) than first-generation migrants. Research has focused on the role of acculturation, defined as the sociocultural and psychological adaptations from navigating multiple cultural environments.
Using content analysis, we conducted a scoping review on acculturation-related experiences and suicide-related risk in Asian-American/Pacific Islander, Hispanic/Latinx, and Black youth (henceforth described as “ethnoracially minoritized adolescents”), identifying 27 empirical articles in 2005–2022.
Findings were mixed: 19 articles found a positive association between acculturation and higher risk for suicide ideation and attempts, namely when assessed as acculturative stress; 3 articles a negative association; and 5 articles no association. Most of the research, however, was cross-sectional, largely focused on Hispanic/Latinx youth, relied on demographic variables or acculturation-related constructs as proxies for acculturation, used single-item assessments for suicide risk, and employed non-random sampling strategies. Although few articles discussed the role of gender, none discussed the intersections of race, sexual orientation, or other social identities on acculturation.
Without a more developmental approach and systematic application of an intersectional research framework that accounts for racialized experiences, the mechanisms by which acculturation may influence the risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior remain unclear, resulting in a dearth of culturally responsive suicide-prevention strategies among migrant and ethnoracially minoritized youth.
Polanco-Roman, L., Ebrahimi, C.T., Mafnas, K.S.W. et al. 2023. "Acculturation and suicide-related risk in ethnoracially minoritized youth in the US: a scoping review and content analysis of the empirical evidence." Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol.