Problematic Smartphone Use Mediates the Pathway from Suicidal Ideation to Positive Psychotic Experiences: a Large Cross-Sectional, Population-Based Study
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AbstractThe present study followed the newly hypothesized "suicidal drive for psychosis" suggesting that psychosis may be consequential to suicidal ideation (SI) and behavior and attempted to explain parts of the pathway between these variables. To this end, we aimed to test whether problematic smartphone use (PSU) has an indirect mediating effect in the cross-sectional relationship between SI and positive psychotic experiences (PEs). Lebanese community young adults (N=4158; 64.4% females; mean age 21.91±3.79) have been invited to participate to a cross-sectional, web-based study in the period from June to September 2022. After adjusting for potential confounders (i.e., the living situation, marital status, household crowding index, economic pressure, cannabis use, other drugs use, and past history of mental illness other than psychosis), we found that higher levels of suicidal ideation was significantly associated with greater PSU, which was also positively and significantly associated with more positive PEs. Finally, greater suicidal ideation was significantly and directly associated with more positive PEs. Our findings suggest that SPU may be regarded as a potential target for prevention and intervention in psychosis. Clinicians, educators, and school administrators ought to give greater attention to PSU among vulnerable young people who present with SI.
Journal titleInternational journal of mental health and addiction