Even though intentional self harm is a unique predictor of suicide, proof for viable self harm interventions are absent. Around the world, suicide had accounted for an expected 804,000 deaths in 2012 alone. The quantity of suicide attempts is 10 to 40 times higher than the quantity of death by suicide, implying that there are between 9 and 35 million suicide attempts that happen yearly. Intentional self harm, the proposed new classification for a suicide attempt, is unequivocally connected to reoccurring mortality and suicidal behavior. Inside the first year after attempting self harm, around 16% of individuals go on and attempt self harm once more and up to 2% die by suicide. In the biggest follow-up study to date, a psychosocial intervention therapy was offered after intentional self injury. The point of the study was to determine if psychosocial treatment after self harm was connected to lower risk of repeated suicide attempts, general morality, and death by suicide.

In this matched partner study, all individuals who, after intentional self harm, received a psychosocial intervention and were then compared with individuals who did not get the psychosocial intervention therapy after intentional suicide attempt. The psychosocial intervention therapy was centered around suicide prevention. Each of the facilities provided treatment as usual, including cognitive therapy, critical thinking, crisis intervention, problem solving, family systems, psychoanalytic approaches, and counseling from social workers for suicide prevention.

This treatment as usual study did not change the treatment plan. Standard aftercare immediately after intentional self harm consisted of being admitted into a psychiatric hospital, referral to outpatient treatment center or a general practitioner, or a release without any referral.

After their initial treatment for their suicide attempt, patients were then sent to the emergency room, psychiatric facilities, medical clinics, or general practitioners, although self directed referrals also occurred. The follow up intervention in the study was comprised of eight to ten individual sessions in an outpatient setting. The measured endpoints were repeated self harm, deceased due to suicide, and death due to any reason.

5,678 individuals who have had psychosocial treatment (followed up for 42.828 human years) were matched with 17,034 people with no psychosocial therapy in a ratio of 1:8. During a 20 year follow-up, 16.5% of the individuals who received  psychosocial treatment had repeated demonstrations of self harm, and 6.9% resulted in death, and 16% died by suicide. The psychosocial intervention therapy showed significantly lower risks of self harm than versus those who did not receive the psychosocial therapy. Long term impacts were distinguished for repeated self harm risk reduction, death by suicide, and death due to any reason, suggesting that 145 self harm episodes and 153 deaths, including 30 deaths due to suicide, were actually prevented.

Those who experience thoughts of self harm constitute a high-risk group for suicide attempts and completed suicide, so preventive measures are essential; yet, implemented specialized therapeutic support after self harm is uncommon. These discoveries support psychosocial interventions after intentional self harm results in a lower risk of repeated self harm, death due to suicide, and death due to any reason.

Because our treatment for depression relies on evidence based practices, our Intensive Outpatient Program shares many common methods with other successful treatment methods to prevent suicide.  The foundation of our treatment program for relies on the principles of the stages of change, cognitive behavioral therapy, solution focused treatment, skills training and identifying repetitive dysfunctional behavioral relationship patterns to promote recovery from depression and other mental health disorders that result in depression and suicide attempts.  In fact, our Intensive Outpatient Program in Memphis, TN that has been proven to be effective in the treatment of these disorders in seven peer reviewed treatment outcome studies.   Our treatment center provides services to those who need more treatment than one hour a week, but less than 24 hour care, by providing three hours of treatment per day, three to five days per week, in an intensive outpatient setting.  If you or a loved one is showing signs of intentional self injury, depression or anxiety, they should be assessed by a trained mental health professional who can help design a treatment plan for depression that can result in recovery.  Treatment for depression and anxiety can be highly successful.  Call us at 901-682-6136 to schedule an appointment.