Self-compassion-focused interventions may be able to decrease posttraumatic stress symptoms. However, previous studies demonstrated mixed effects in which a series of confounders were not systematically quantified. In this study, a systematic review with meta-analysis was conducted to quantify the effects of self-compassion-focused therapies on posttraumatic stress disorder.
Twelve eligible studies were included after a systematic search of databases. Outcome measures were extracted for posttraumatic stress disorder.
Our data indicated a medium protective effect on posttraumatic stress symptoms (SMD = − 0.65), with most of the studies (8/12) coming from clinical settings. More importantly, longer interventions were associated with better posttraumatic stress outcomes (p < 0.001). Baseline or changes in self-compassion scores were not associated with posttraumatic stress outcomes post-interventions.
Overall, findings from this meta-analysis quantified the complex influence of self-compassion-focused interventions on posttraumatic stress symptoms and may provide insights for optimizing intervention strategies.