Non-Suicidal Self-Injury Throughout the Lifespan : A Clinician's Guide to Treatment Considerations book cover
1st Edition

Non-Suicidal Self-Injury Throughout the Lifespan
A Clinician's Guide to Treatment Considerations

ISBN 9780815371359
Published November 4, 2019 by Routledge
270 Pages 13 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

A comprehensive guide for clinicians working with patients engaging in self-injury, this book provides information on clinical conceptualization, risk and protective factors, ways to assess for NSSI, treatment approaches and strategies, and early intervention and prevention strategies.

Focusing on ethical and cultural considerations unique to schools, clinical agencies, and private-practice settings, the authors provide a practical and in-depth discussion of clinical theory. Procedures for determining risk and the potential problems with risk assessment, especially concerning suicide risk, are addressed. In addition to numerous exercises, examples, and suggestions for practical interventions, the book includes a variety of detailed worksheets and resources to expand readers’ level of understanding, monitor emerging trends, and provide a context for extended training. Several case studies are discussed and analyzed in order to highlight specific aspects of clinical conceptualization and treatment strategies.

Drawn from a wide range of treatment populations and issues, this book is a valuable resource for clinicians and supervisors. The authors integrate outcomes-based research strategies and evidenced-based tools to help clinicians work with clients from diverse backgrounds.


Table of Contents


List of figures, tables, cases, and textboxes

Key terminology

Ethics statement


Part I: Introduction to Case Scenarios

1. Non-suicidal self-injury in childhood

Kelly Emelianchik-Key

2. Non-suicidal self-injury in adolescents and young adults

Amanda La Guardia

3. NSSI in adulthood and the aging population

Amanda La Guardia

Part II: Assessment and Screening for Non-Suicidal Self-Injury

4. Risk and Protective Factors

Kelly Emelianchik-Key

5. Assessment and Diagnosis

Kelly Emelianchik-Key

6. Gender and Diversity Considerations

Kelly Emelianchik-Key

Part III: Assessment and Screening for Non-Suicidal Self-Injury

7. Ethical considerations when working with non-suicidal self-injury

Kelly Emelianchik-Key and Mariah Dern

8. Self-Directed Violence – Non-suicidal self-injury and suicide

Amanda La Guardia

9. Prevention and Treatment Strategies in Educational Settings

Ellen Chance

10. Prevention and Treatment Strategies in Community Settings

Adriana Labarta and Bridget Glass

11. Future Directions and Research in Non-Suicidal Self-injury

Kelly Emelianchik-Key and Amanda La Guardia

Part IV Worksheets and resources

Appendix A: Resource list

Appendix B: Elementary safety plan

Appendix C: Narrative storyboard

Appendix D: Cognitive mapping

Appendix E: Adapted DBT youth meditation

Appendix F: Bronfenbrenner worksheet

Appendix G: Chain analysis of NSSI behavior

Appendix H: Checklist for working with youth

Appendix I: Building support circles

Appendix J: Taking your emotional temperature

Appendix K: Voice of reason

Appendix L: My impulse control log

Appendix M: My life of purpose and meaning

Appendix N: Wheel of influence

Appendix O: Self-care wheel

Appendix P: My house


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Kelly Emelianchik-Key, PhD, LMHC, NCC, ACS, is a licensed clinical mental health counselor and assistant professor in the counseling department at Florida Atlantic University. She has completed extensive research and training in teen dating violence, non-suicidal self-injury, and sexuality issues.

Amanda C. La Guardia, PhD, LPCC-S, NCC, is a licensed professional clinical counselor supervisor and assistant professor for the counseling program at the University of Cincinnati. She has completed extensive research and training in the areas of non-suicidal self-injury and suicide, gender-related issues, and professional development.


"This book is a vital addition to the literature on non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI). Our profession has been riddled with misunderstanding about this behavior in clients we serve. This text offers clarity on the subject and also offers us multiple treatment plans and interventions. It outlines NSSI across life development stages, which offers a unique perspective in the discussion of self-injurious behaviors. The case studies provide information and assistance that will be vital in working with clients who have a relationship with NSSI. I applaud these authors and have deep appreciation for what they have added to the literature in our field."Patricia E. Robertson, EdD, professor emerita, East Tennessee State University, USA

"Emelianchik-Key and La Guardia have produced thorough and timely guide for practitioners and students who need effective guidance in treating the complicated issue of non-suicidal self-injury. With practical tools, detailed case studies, and thorough treatment strategies, this guide will become an important reference tool for any clinician."Paul R. Peluso, PhD, LMHC, LMFT, professor and chair of the Department of Counselor Education, Florida Atlantic University, USA

"NSSI is one of the most pervasive and destructive activities among adolescents and young adults, so you would think that there would be a ton of useful information on the people and processes, both individual and systemic, that are affected by this problem.  Sadly, this was not the case—until now.   This book brings all of us up to date on the problem and its treatment in a very readable text that is loaded with case studies. As a person who has experienced this with a family member, I can say without hesitation that I wish this book had been available ten years ago." James Robert Bitter, EdD, NCC, past president of the North American Society of Adlerian Psychology, professor of counseling and human services, East Tennessee State University, USA

"Emelianchik-Key and La Guardia expertly guide readers through the complexities of NSSI, weaving in available best practices, resources, and scholarship from across the helping professions. The authors provide an innovative, thoughtful, and case-based approach for assessing and treating diverse clients across the lifespan with NSSI. This text is a must-have clinical resource!" Danica G. Hays, PhD, professor of counselor education and executive associate dean, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, USA