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December 9, 2016

New Online Course on Non-Suicidal Self-Injury (NSSI) at HealthForumOnline

HealthForumOnline (HFO) adds a new online continuing education (CE) course, Exploring Non-Suicidal Self-Injury (NSSI): Relevance, Theory, Associated Risk, Assessment & Treatment, to their library of courses for mental health professionals and allied healthcare providers. This online CE course enables psychologists, social workers, counselors and other health professionals to better identify NSSI, assess risk factors for suicide and apply evidence-based psychosocial interventions to this important, and growing, population.

Philadelphia, PA (PRWEB) December 9, 2016  –HealthForumOnline (HFO), a nationally-approved (APA, ASWB, NBCC) provider of convenient, cost-effective online continuing education (CE) for counselors, psychologists, social workers and allied healthcare providers is pleased to announce a new CE course entitled, Exploring Non-Suicidal Self-Injury (NSSI): Relevance, Theory, Associated Risk, Assessment & Treatment, to its extensive library of online CE courses for mental health professionals.

Non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI), also known as self-harm and parasuicidal behavior, represents an intentional self-inflicted injury to the body to cause pain, bleeding or bruising but without the presence of suicidal intention. Within the NSSI arena, individuals use varied maladaptive behaviors to inflict injury upon themselves including cutting, burning, skin carving, biting, embedding objects under the skin or head banging -- with up to 69% utilizing 2 or more methods of self-harm (e.g., 1).

Generally first noted around ages 11-15, NSSI is most prevalent (17-18%) among adolescents (2). While many adolescents try NSSI behavior, most only engage in 1 or 2 incidents before stopping. For some, however, the behavior warrants a full-blown DSM 5 diagnosis and can persist into adulthood (3). Among adolescents, NSSI is often linked to decreased psychosocial functioning, body dissatisfaction, low self-esteem, interpersonal problems, and co-morbid psychiatric disorders (e.g., 4).

NSSI is a growing concern worldwide, in part, because of skyrocketing lifetime prevalence rates (as high as 39%) over the past decade (5). Another reason for concern is NSSI’s association with actual attempted and completed suicide, particularly within the 6 months immediately following an NSSI episode (6). This association is especially alarming since suicide is ranked as the third leading cause of pediatric death in the U.S. alone, and we have seen dramatic increases between 1999 and 2014 in suicide among youth ages 10-14 (200% increase among females; 37% among males) (7).

While there is an association between NSSI and suicide, there are also clear distinctions having to do with intention, repetition and lethality. Not surprisingly, many clinicians want to learn all they can to effectively identify and treat NSSI in a timely fashion – thus improving patient well-being and increasing efforts to prevent actual suicide attempts and completions. The information provided within this online CE course will enhance clinical ability to identify NSSI, facilitate differential diagnosis, recognize the underlying mechanisms of self-injury and assess for associated risk factors from a theory- and evidence-based perspective. In addition, clinical interventions to treat NSSI, as well as emerging strategies and psychopharmacologic approaches, are discussed. Lastly, a case example is presented to illustrate this disorder.

Mental health professionals can chose from HFO’s over 20 categories of continuing education (CE) topics related to psychology and behavioral medicine. For a complete listing of our convenient and cost-effective online CE courses, visit HealthForumOnline.com.


  1. Hornor, G. (2016). Nonsuicidal self-injury. Journal of Pediatric Health Care, 30(3), 261-267.
  2. Swannell, S.V., et al. (2014). Prevalence of nonsuicidal self-injury in nonclinical samples: systematic review, meta-analysis and meta-regression. Suicide Life Threatening Behavior, 44, 273-303.
  3. Rodav, O., et al. (2014). Clinical characteristics and functions of non-suicide self-injury in youth. European Psychiatry, 29, 503-508.
  4. Barrocas, A. L., et al. (2015). Nonsuicidal self-injury in adolescence: Longitudinal course, trajectories, and intrapersonal predictors. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 43(2), 369-380.
  5. Muehlenkamp, J.J., et al. (2012). International prevalence of adolescent non-suicidal self-injury and deliberate self-harm. Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health, 6(10), 1-9.   
  6. Grandclerc, S., et al. (2016). Relations between nonsuicidal self injury and suicidal behavior in adolescence: A systematic review. PloS One, (4), 11.
  7. Curtin, S.C., et al. (2016). Increase in Suicide in the United States, 1999-2014. NCHS Data Brief, 241.