School Psychology Forum

Nonsuicidal Self-Injury on the Internet: An Overview and Guide for School Mental Health Professionals

Jasmine C. Mahdy & Stephen P. Lewis

Nonsuicidal Self Injury, pp. 148-160

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ABSTRACT: In the past few years, there has been an explosion of online content and communication regarding nonsuicidal self-injury (NSSI). Research indicates the Internet may be particularly salient among those adolescents who engage in NSSI. Indeed, many youth who self-injure connect with others who self-injure via the Internet in order to obtain needed support and to share their NSSI experiences. Certain forms of online NSSI activity may confer risk for NSSI continuation and may possibly trigger NSSI urges. In light of this, the current article provides school mental health professionals with an overview of knowledge about the nature of online NSSI activity among youth, the manner by which certain forms of online activity may have an impact on youth, and how to incorporate online NSSI activity in work with adolescents who self-injure. To illustrate how this may transpire, a case example is presented. Online resources to recommend to youth and caregivers are also provided.