Implicit or explicit self-associations with life and death? Predicting short-term self-injurious thoughts and behaviors among adolescents

N. Toukhy*, Y. Gvion, S. Barzilay, A. Apter, L. Haruvi-Catalan, M. Lavidor, N. Benaroya-Milshtein, S. Fennig, S. Hamdan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Implicit self-association with death, measured by the Death/Suicide-Implicit Association Test (D/S-IAT), predicts short-term Self-Injurious Thoughts and Behaviors (SITBs) among adolescents. However, comparing the predictive utility of the D/S-IAT with explicit (i.e. self-report) self-association with life and death was not examined previously. The current study sought to examine whether the D/S-IAT and explicit self-association with life and death predict current and prospective SITBs, and to examine the association between the two measures. One-hundred and thirty-one Jewish Israeli adolescents with SITBs, aged 10-18 years (74.8% female) were assessed at clinic intake. Participants completed D/S-IAT, depression, attitudes toward life and death and suicide risk assessment at intake and one-month follow-up. Implicit, rather than explicit, attitudes toward life and death predicted SITBs at one-month follow-up, beyond depression and past SITBs. The implicit and explicit measures were not significantly related at intake, indicating that they might capture different aspects of SITBs.

Original languageEnglish
JournalDeath Studies
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2024
Externally publishedYes

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