Can Divorce Actually Kill You?

A serious couple standing beside each otherCan divorce increase death rates? Divorces are already extremely difficult situations to deal with, but a new study suggests a dire new risk.

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According to a new study, divorcees tend to have a higher chance of suffering from accidental deaths. The report was published online recently in the journal Social Science Research.  It tracked data from 1.3 million Americans aged 18 and older who survived or died in accidents between 1986 and 2006.

Divorced people were two times more likely than married people to die from the most-preventable causes of accidental death — hazards such as fire or poisoning. Both groups had an equal risk of dying from the least-preventable causes of accidental death, for example, things such as airplane or boat accidents.

Single people were also two times more likely than married people to die from the most-preventable causes of accidental death and just as likely to die from the least-preventable causes, the investigators found.

According to study lead author Justin Denney, an assistant professor of sociology at Rice University, married people tend to offer each other encouragement and support in staying healthy, and may be on hand to help when a partner faces a health emergency.

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