Top Causes of Death for Ages 25-44

The top causes of death for men and women in the 25-44 age group are largely preventable. Compared to ages 15-24, more chronic diseases begin to appear in this list. These illnesses are due, in part, to lifestyle factors such as exercise, diet, and stress. The overall risk of dying in ages 25-44 is 0.15% per year which is pretty low. Still, this list of mostly preventable deaths is worth noting as changes in eating habits, physical activity, and lifestyle habits can help lower the mortality rate and add years on to your life.


A fatal car accident

​ John Clutterbuck/Getty Images

Better safe than sorry is an important adage as accidents are the leading cause of death in this age group. Knowing that 16% are from auto accidents is another cause for concern. Buckle up, drive responsibly and put your cell phone down to save lives, including your own.

  • % of Deaths: 33.6 (motor vehicle accidents: 16)
  • Prevention Methods: Wear your seat belt, drive defensively and have a short commute.


Early detection, and thus early treatment can save a life that would've otherwise been lost to cancer. Be sure to listen to your body, get checked out quickly if you think something is wrong, perform regular self-checks, and see your healthcare provider regularly each year.

  • % of Deaths: 22
  • Prevention Methods: Eat well, exercise, and get regular check-ups.

Heart Disease

It is the leading cause of death overall in the US. Be vigilant in staying heart healthy by eating right, exercising, and getting proper sleep.

  • % of Deaths: 18.7
  • Prevention Methods: Relaxation, good nutrition, and exercise.


After accidents, suicide is the second leading cause of death in this age group. Be sure if you're having trouble to reach out. There are emergency hotlines available in a crisis, but an approach to staying out of trouble is to see a counselor regularly to sort out certain issues.

  • % of Deaths: 13.6
  • Prevention Methods: Reduce your risk by seeking help for depression and mental illness.


Homicide kills more people than HIV. Protect yourself and your friends by keeping an open line of communication to resolve conflicts and report any threats or suspicions to law enforcement.

  • % of Deaths: 8.5
  • Prevention Methods: Reduce your risk by seeking help for domestic violence and avoiding risky situations.


Take proper precautions to prevent transmission of the virus that causes AIDS. Always protect yourself and your partner and get tested regularly if you have more than one sex partner or have encountered anyone who may have had interactions with illicit drugs.

  • % of Deaths: 7.5
  • Prevention Methods: Practice safe sex and avoid injection drugs.

Chronic Liver Disease and Cirrhosis

Alcohol abuse is not just destructive emotionally, prolonged and regular alcohol abuse can lead to liver disease.

  • % of Deaths: 3.6
  • Prevention Methods: Drink alcohol only in moderation.


Look out for sudden numbness or weakness in one area of your body, confusion, trouble speaking or seeing or a sudden lack of coordination. These are all symptoms of a stroke.

  • % of Deaths: 3.4
  • Prevention Methods: Eat well, exercise, and take care of your heart.


In addition to regular exercise, health consistent meals, and adequate sleep, be sure you see a healthcare provider if you experience tingling pain or numbness in your hands or feet. There are other pre-Diabetes symptoms to watch out for as well.

  • % of Deaths: 3.1
  • Prevention Methods: Reduce your risk by eating well, avoiding excess sugar, and controlling your diabetes if you have it.

Flu and Pneumonia

Surprisingly people still die from flu and pneumonia and the reason why is they wait too long after symptoms start to get help and underestimate their illness. As soon as you have symptoms, see a healthcare provider to rule out serious health concerns.

  • % of Deaths: 1.4
  • Prevention Methods: Reduce your risk by getting a flu vaccine and washing your hands.32.7% of mortality in this age group is due to other causes.

By Mark Stibich, PhD
Mark Stibich, PhD, FIDSA, is a behavior change expert with experience helping individuals make lasting lifestyle improvements.