The effects of expressive writing on pain, depression and posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms in survivors of intimate partner violence

Cheryl Koopman, Tasneem Ismailji, Danielle M Vrieze, Catherine C. Classen, Oxana Palesh, Talor Wales

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

56 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study examined the effects of expressive writing on depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and pain symptoms among women who have survived intimate partner violence (IPV). Forty-seven women completed baseline and four-month follow-up assessments and were randomly assigned to four writing sessions of either expressive writing focused on traumatic life events or writing about a neutral topic. Main effects were not significant for changes in depression, pain or PTSD symptoms. However, among depressed women, those assigned to expressive writing showed a significantly greater drop in depression. For depressed women with IPV histories, expressive writing may lead to reduced depression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-221
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Health Psychology
Volume10
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2005
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Depression
  • Expressive writing
  • Intimate partner violence
  • Pain
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder

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