Urgent call for research into imagery rescripting to reduce suicidal mental imagery: clinical research considerations

Georgie Paulik, Laura S. Van Velzen, Christopher W. Lee, Connie Markulev, Jennifer Jackson Simpson, Pemma Davies, Sarah Bendall, Lianne Schmaal

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Dysfunctional mental imagery is integral to the maintenance of many psychological disorders and is typically associated with stronger affective and behavioural responses than verbal cognitions. This finding extends itself to the high prevalence of suicidal mental imagery in disorders such as depression and bipolar disorder. Imagery Rescripting is a therapy approach which has been found to effectively reduce dysfunctional mental images across various mental health conditions. Thus, Imagery Rescripting of suicidal mental imagery may be effective at reducing such cognitions and ultimately associated risk. However, this remains an unexplored area within the treatment literature. This paper puts out an urgent call for clinical research to evaluate the effectiveness of such a treatment intervention, and to assist, we propose and describe a clinical approach to this to stimulate further thought and research. There are also many research questions of clinical relevance that must be explored in this field of work, which we put forward and consider in this commentary piece.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-23
Number of pages9
JournalAustralian Psychologist
Issue number1
Early online date5 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - 2024

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