A new study has found that access to gender-affirming care significantly cuts the risk of suicide and depression in trans kids. 

Trigger Warning: This story discusses self-harm, which might be distressing to some readers. For 24-hour crisis support and suicide prevention call Lifeline on 13 11 14. For Australia-wide LGBTQI peer support call QLife on 1800 184 527 or webchat.

In the study conducted by researchers at the University of Washington, 104 transgender and non-binary children aged between 13 and 20 had their mental health monitored over the course of a year. 

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About two-thirds received puberty blockers and/or gender-affirming hormone treatment during the entire year.

Significantly Reduced Risk of Suicide

According to the researchers, there were “60% lower odds of depression” and “73% lower odds of suicidality” the following year, among kids who received puberty blockers and/ or gender-affirming hormone treatment compared to kids who had not.

The study also showed that participants who were  “unable to start these medications within three to six months of their first appointment with a medical provider had a two- to threefold increase in depression and suicidality.”

The study’s lead author, Diana Tordoff and co-author Arin Collin wrote in the Conversation that their findings “suggest that delays in prescribing hormones and puberty blockers may worsen mental health symptoms for trans youth.”

Tordoff emphasised to UPI News, “Our study builds on what we have already seen from an already staggering amount of scientific research. Access to gender-affirming care saves trans youth’s lives.”

 

If you feel distressed reading the story, you can reach out to support services.

For 24-hour crisis support and suicide prevention call Lifeline on 13 11 14

For Australia-wide LGBTQI peer support call QLife on 1800 184 527 or webchat.

 

 

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