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Depress Anxiety. 2019 May;36(5):400-411. doi: 10.1002/da.22877. Epub 2019 Jan 18.

Gratitude diary for the management of suicidal inpatients: A randomized controlled trial.

Author information

1
CHU Montpellier, Lapeyronie Hospital, Department of Emergency Psychiatry and Post Acute Care, CHRU Montpellier, Montpellier, France.
2
INSERM U1061, Neuropsychiatry, Epidemiological and Clinical Research, Montpellier, France.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The management of suicidal crisis remains a major issue for clinicians, driving the development of new strategies.

METHODS:

We conducted a randomized controlled trial based on a 7-day add-on positive psychology program: gratitude diary (intervention) versus food diary (control) in adults hospitalized for current suicidal ideation or a suicide attempt. The primary effectiveness outcome was between-group differences for mean change of current psychological pain, between the beginning and the end of the 7-day intervention. We measured between-group differences for mean change of suicidal ideation, hopelessness and optimism, and depression and anxiety between inclusion and after the completion of the 7-day intervention. We compared mean change of current psychological pain, suicidal ideation, and hopelessness and optimism between immediate pre and post daily journal completion.

RESULTS:

Two hundred and one participants were enrolled and randomized. Between pretherapy and posttherapy: There were no significant between-group differences for mean change of severity and intensity of suicidal ideation and current hopelessness. Between-group difference for mean change of current psychological pain was trending (P = 0.05). Mean change of depression, anxiety, and optimism was significantly higher in the intervention than in the control group. Between immediate pre and post daily journal completion: Between-group differences favored gratitude (vs. food) diary for all outcomes (psychological pain, suicidal ideation, and hopelessness and optimism; P < 10-3 ). Participants found the intervention to be more useful than the food diary.

CONCLUSIONS:

Through gratitude diary appears a very straightforward intervention that could be developed as an adjunctive strategy for suicidal patients.

KEYWORDS:

gratitude; positive psychology; randomized controlled trial; suicidal crisis

PMID:
30657226
DOI:
10.1002/da.22877
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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