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Short men "more prone to suicide"

Tall men are less likely to suffer mental health issues and attempt to commit suicide, a new study shows.

The research looked at suicide and death figures for 320,000 men born in Sweden between 1973 and 1980.

It found that babies born less than 47cm in length are more likely to try and kill themselves as adults.

The results, published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, also reveal short men who were born a normal size are also affected.

They are 56% more likely to take their own lives than tall men, it added.

The authors suggest the chemical serotonin, which is crucial to brain development, could be the reason for the study's findings.

Reduced levels of serotonin can trigger aggressive and suicidal behavioural traits, and can be caused by premature birth, and other factors affecting growth in the womb.

Those born with a low birth weight are also at a substantial risk, as they are more than 2.5 times more likely to take their own lives in a violent manner, even if they reach normal height in adulthood.

And for men born both short and underweight, the chance of them trying to commit suicide violently is quadruple that of those born after a full nine months.

Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health

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