The DAILY project: Detection of Acute rIsk of seLf-injurY in reallife.
Non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) is a serious, yet common, mental health concern among young people. Up to 10% of adolescents and emerging adults engage in NSSI every year and are at increased risk for future suicide attempts. As such, there is an urgent need to better understand how to prevent in-the-moment instances of NSSI in reallife. Despite our understanding of long-term predictors that developmentally explain who is at risk of beginning NSSI, we have very little insight into short-term predictors that detect and explain when young people are at acute risk of thinking about and engaging in NSSI. Fortunately, the proliferation of new technologies has made it feasible to collect data with enough temporal precision to address this challenging question. The DAILY project will advance science by: (1) improving the detection of acute risk of both NSSI thoughts and NSSI behavior, (2) clarifying determinants of the transition from thoughts to behavior, and (3) identifying when risk is most acute, for whom, and who is at risk for future trajectories of NSSI and suicidality. To do this, I will monitor, throughout the day, the situational, emotional, and cognitive experiences of 100 individuals who self-injure. This innovative project will be groundbreaking in increasing our understanding of real-time predictors of NSSI, thereby laying the foundation for novel interventions that assist people in resisting the urge to self-injure.