More than 1.2 million adolescents across the world die every year of mainly preventable causes including road traffic injuries, lower respiratory infections and suicide, the World Health Organisation (WHO) reported Tuesday.
With more than two thirds of recorded adolescent deaths in 2015 taking place in low and middle-income countries in Africa and south-east Asia, WHO said that most of the fatalities could be avoided by improving health services, education and social support.
According to statistics, road injuries were the top global cause of deaths for all adolescents aged between 10 and 19 years old, with some 115,000 such cases documented in 2015.
This was followed by deaths resulting from lower respiratory infections (72,655), self-harm (67,149), diarrhoeal diseases (63,575) and drowning (57,125).
WHO warned however that both regional and gender-based disparities exist.
In low and middle income African countries, communicable diseases including HIV/AIDS, lower respiratory infections, meningitis, and diarrhoeal diseases are bigger killers than road-related injuries.
Similarly, while the leading causes of death for adolescent males are road traffic injuries, interpersonal violence and drowning, the top three causes of death for females are lower respiratory infections, self-harm and diarrheal diseases.