A brief mindfulness intervention attenuates desire to escape following experimental induction of the interpersonal adversity implicated in suicide risk

Khan R.L. Collins, Claudia Stebbing, Werner G.K. Stritzke, Andrew C. Page

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)
281 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

According to the interpersonal theory of suicide, perceived burdensomeness and thwarted belongingness are proximal causal factors underlying suicidal desire. The current study examined whether a brief mindfulness intervention can attenuate the deleterious effects of these interpersonal factors on desire to escape, a potential antecedent to suicide risk. Participants (N = 92) completed a computerized team task designed to manipulate perceived burdensomeness and thwarted belongingness (high or low PB/TB) and were randomly assigned to one of four conditions: (1) low PB/TB without intervention, (2) high PB/TB without intervention, (3) high PB/TB with a brief mindfulness intervention administered at the halfway point, or (4) high PB/TB with a brief unfocused attention intervention administered at the halfway point. As expected, simultaneous induction of perceived burdensomeness and thwarted belongingness increased desire to escape in the initial stages of the task in all three high PB/TB conditions. However, the mindfulness intervention attenuated the effects of the interpersonal factors on desire to escape across the latter stages of the task relative to the unfocused attention intervention and the high PB/TB condition where no intervention was administered. Findings suggest that mindfulness interventions may protect against the type of interpersonal adversity causally implicated in suicidal desire.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1096-1105
Number of pages10
JournalMindfulness
Volume8
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2017

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