Examining the acceptability, attractiveness, and effects of a school-based validating interview for adolescents who self-injure

J Sch Nurs. 2013 Jun;29(3):225-34. doi: 10.1177/1059840512458527. Epub 2012 Aug 28.


Nonsuicidal self-injury (NSSI) in adolescents is a significant problem that needs to be addressed, and in some cases managed, in school settings. The current feasibility study uses screening questionnaires and follow up-interviews on NSSI in a community sample of adolescents (N = 1,052) in Sweden. Both adolescents reporting self-injury (n = 66) and a comparison group (n = 31) were interviewed, and information disclosed about self-injury, as well as the results from the interviewers assessments of the seriousness of these behaviors, were examined. Generally, adolescents reported positive feelings about being interviewed, and 52% of those who had reported self-injury in the questionnaire disclosed NSSI in the interviews. Further, a majority of these cases, 76%, were not assessed as very serious. When NSSI was reported in a questionnaire 1 year after the interview, there were no indications of iatrogenic effects from participating in the interview. The results support the feasibility of using NSSI screening questionnaires in combination with follow-up interviews in schools.

Keywords: mental health; program development/evaluation; quantitative research; safety/injury prevention.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior / psychology*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interview, Psychological / methods*
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Program Evaluation / methods*
  • Program Evaluation / statistics & numerical data
  • Schools
  • Self-Injurious Behavior / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Sweden