Does Brain Inflammation Cause Suicidal Thoughts?

Itís easy to think there is something mentally wrong with us if we experience suicidal thoughts, but new research shows that there may be a physiological reason for those detrimental thoughts and the major depression behind them.

According to new research in the Jan 1, 2018 edition of the medical journal Biological Psychology found a link between brain inflammation and suicidal thoughts. While brain inflammation has previously been linked to depression, this study goes further in linking it to suicidal thoughts and major depression.

Previously there had been little progress in our understanding of why people have suicidal thoughts or tendencies. That lack of information may easily cause people to fault themselves, wrongly assuming that they are just too weak to cope with the things in their life. But the new study suggests that the self-destructive thoughts are not all in their head, but in their brain. And, the potential causes or aggravators of brain inflammation may be the real problem.

Sadly, more than 40,000 people commit suicide in the United States annually, making suicide the 10th leading cause of death in America, so anything that helps reduce the suffering that causes people to take their own life is worth further exploration.

So what exactly causes brain inflammation? Well, the research is still fairly new so we canít say for sure what might be behind the inflammation that causes suicidal thoughts, but we do know that substances known as neurotoxins (toxins that damage the brain and nervous system) can cause or aggravate brain inflammation.

There are many different neurotoxins, with many more being unleashed on an unsuspecting public, largely because the regulatory agencies have grandfathered so many chemicals without any research to determine their safety and now merely require companies to submit their own (often falsified) research to ensure the publicís safety. As a result, many pesticides, flame retardants and other chemicals have been allowed in consumer products, foods and household building materials. While there are countless neurotoxins that may be contributing to brain inflammation, here are some common ones:


Dow Chemical Corporation began marketing this chemical as an insecticide in 1965 and it soon became the most popular insect killer in American homes. By 1995 the Environmental Protection Agency fined the company a meagre $732,000 for concealing over 200 reports of poisoning linked to the chemical, which is barely a slap on the wrist to a company with Dowís revenues. It is still in widespread use on food crops, as well as in greenhouses and golf courses. Choose organic food and bedding plants as much as possible and search out pesticide-free golf courses if you must have your golf fix.


Known as polybrominated diphenyl ethers, PBDEs are flame retardants that are in widespread household use, particularly on furniture and mattresses. While the industry that makes the chemical continues to cite their benefits against fires without any recognition of the damage they can cause, which could more than make up for their flame retardant properties. The chemicals have been linked to brain damage, including IQ and attention span losses. Choose organic mattresses and furniture, free of flame retardants, as much as possible. Also, limit your consumption of fish like rainbow trout and Atlantic salmon, as well as sausage, cheese, butter and milk since PBDEs have been found in these foods.


Not technically a chemical, lead is a heavy metal that has brain damaging effects. It is found in canned food, paint, water pipes, colored glossy newsprint, ceramic dishes, cigarette smoke, vehicle emissions and soil. Food cooked in water that has high lead absorbs the metal. It has been found to be linked to a range of brain disorders including learning disabilities, heightened aggression, attention deficit disorder, dementia and Alzheimerís. Its neurotoxic effects could cause or aggravate brain inflammation. It can be difficult to avoid lead, but do your best to avoid canned goods and cigarettes as much as possible.


Found in solvents, paints, nail polish, perfumes, colognes, laundry products, fabric softeners and other scented products, toluene (also known as methylbenzene) is a well-established neurotoxin. Choose unscented, natural cleaning products from your local health food store. Avoid perfumes, colognes and fabric softeners altogether. Forego nail polish or choose toluene-free options.

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Dr. Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, DNM is the publisher of the free e-news Worldís Healthiest News, the Cultured Cook, president of PureFood BC, and an international best-selling and 20-time published book author whose works include: The Cultured Cook: Delicious Fermented Foods with Probiotics to Knock Out Inflammation, Boost Gut Health, Lose Weight & Extend Your Life.


Marie W
Marie Wabout a month ago

Thanks for sharing

Kelly S
Past Member 4 months ago

maybe but I know PAIN sure does.....

Danuta W
Danuta Watola7 months ago

Thanks for the article.

Claudia S
Claudia S7 months ago

thank you

Leo C
Leo C7 months ago

Thank you for sharing!

Mike R
Mike R7 months ago


Dennis Hall
Dennis Hall7 months ago

thank you

Marija M
Marija M7 months ago

Very interesting, tks for sharing.

Veronica B
Veronica B7 months ago

Very good info.Thanks .

Glennis W
Glennis W7 months ago

Very informative Thank you for caring and sharing