This research was supported, in part, by a VA Clinical Science Research and Development (CSR&D) Career Development Award–2 (Bonn-Miller) and Health Services Research and Development Service funds (Babson). The expressed views do not necessarily represent those of the Department of Veterans Affairs.
The Impact of Exercise on Suicide Risk: Examining Pathways through Depression, PTSD, and Sleep in an Inpatient Sample of Veterans
Article first published online: 25 JAN 2013
© 2013 The American Association of Suicidology
Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior
Volume 43, Issue 3, pages 279–289, June 2013
How to Cite
Davidson, C. L., Babson, K. A., Bonn-Miller, M. O., Souter, T. and Vannoy, S. (2013), The Impact of Exercise on Suicide Risk: Examining Pathways through Depression, PTSD, and Sleep in an Inpatient Sample of Veterans. Suicide and Life-Threat Behavi, 43: 279–289. doi: 10.1111/sltb.12014
- Issue published online: 10 JUN 2013
- Article first published online: 25 JAN 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 14 NOV 2012
- Manuscript Received: 10 NOV 2012
Suicide has a large public health impact. Although effective interventions exist, the many people at risk for suicide cannot access these interventions. Exercise interventions hold promise in terms of reducing suicide because of their ease of implementation. While exercise reduces depression, and reductions in depressive symptoms are linked to reduced suicidal ideation, no studies have directly linked exercise and suicide risk. The current study examined this association, including potential mediators (i.e., sleep disturbance, posttraumatic stress symptoms, and depression), in a sample of Veterans. SEM analyses revealed that exercise was directly and indirectly associated with suicide risk. Additionally, exercise was associated with fewer depressive symptoms and better sleep patterns, each of which was, in turn, related to lower suicide risk.