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’13 Reasons’ might have triggered suicide searches online

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CHICAGO  — A popular TV series about a teen’s suicide may have prompted a surge in online searches for suicide, including how to do it.

That’s according to a new study about the show “13 Reasons Why.”

Netflix released all 13 episodes on March 31. Researchers found that for almost three weeks afterward, there were at least 900,000 more than expected Google searches including the word “suicide.” That’s based on forecasts using historical search trends. Searches included suicide methods and suicide hotlines.

The study doesn’t prove a link and didn’t examine any connection with actual suicides or attempts.

Some mental health advocates say the show glamorized suicide. It has been renewed for a second season.

The study was published Monday in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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