Year: 2023 Source: Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior. (2021), 51(4), 741-754. SIEC No: 20230033
Objective Given the high prevalence of self-injury but low treatment-seeking among young adults, brief, accessible interventions might help reduce risk of self-injurious thoughts and behavior in this population. This cross-sectional study examined the moderating effects of decentering—a cognitive–affective regulation strategy—in the relation between non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) and suicide ideation via cognitive–affective factors that increase risk for both NSSI and suicide ideation. Methods College students (N = 125, 79% women), ages 18–27, pre-screened for moderate levels of depression and anxiety, completed self-report measures of NSSI, decentering, rumination, hopelessness, depressive symptoms, and suicide ideation. Results Young adults with past-year non-suicidal self-injury scored lower on decentering than their peers without NSSI. Decentering was associated with lower levels of all cognitive–affective risk factors and moderated the relation between NSSI and rumination, but not the relation between NSSI and hopelessness and depressive symptoms. Decentering moderated the indirect effect of past-year non-suicidal self-injury on past-week suicide ideation via rumination, but not via hopelessness or depressive symptoms. Conclusions Decentering is a potential cognitive–affective regulation strategy for targeting factors that increase risk of self-injurious thoughts and behaviors. Future studies should examine decentering as a buffer against risk using designs that allow for conclusions about temporal order of effects.