Insomnia is a risk factor for suicidal behavior including attempts and suicide. We investigated whether insomnia symptom severity predicted suicidality and suicide in an at-risk sample. The sample included deceased psychiatric patients seen at Weber Human Services since 2008 (N=180) who completed the Outpatient Questionnaire-45.2 (OQ) prior to death. Insomnia symptom severity was assessed using item 41 from the OQ. Manner of death was determined by death records and autopsy reports. History of suicidal ideation and prior suicide attempts were determined through review of electronic medical records. Cases were grouped into 4 categories: no history of suicidality (n = 30), history of suicidal ideation (n = 36), suicide attempt history (n = 95), and death by suicide (n = 19). Insomnia symptom severity was compared across groups using linear regression. Logistic regression was used to determine whether OQ reported insomnia symptom severity predicted suicide, adjusting for psychiatric disorders. Compared to the non-suicidal group, the suicide attempt and the suicide groups reported significantly higher insomnia symptom severity, OR=3.52, p=0.001 and OR=6.53, p<0.001, respectively. Greater insomnia symptom severity reported on the OQ was a significant predictor of suicide attempt and suicide, OR=2.67, p=0.011 and OR=5.53, p=0.002, respectively, even after adjusting psychiatric diagnoses. Results suggest that insomnia symptoms are more strongly associated with suicidal behavior than suicidal ideation. The presence of insomnia symptoms in psychiatric patients may indicate risk for suicidal behavior and is a target for suicide prevention.
College and Department
Family, Home, and Social Sciences
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Simmons, Zachary Alan, "Insomnia Symptom Severity is Associated with Increased Suicidality and Suicide in a Psychiatric Sample" (2020). Theses and Dissertations. 9076.
Insomnia, Suicidality, Suicide, Suicidal Behavior