Associations between Solitary Confinement and Psychosis Symptoms in the Postrelease Community Setting

John Randolph Moore, Jacob Eikenberry, Lisa Fedina, Jordan Devylder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Some evidence suggests that the practice of solitary confinement in incarceration settings is linked to poor mental health outcomes; however, prior research has not yet examined associations between experiences of solitary confinement and psychosis symptoms. To address this gap, authors conducted a cross-sectional survey of 201 formerly incarcerated men and women in the United States to examine the relationship between solitary confinement and psychosis symptoms in the postrelease community setting. Results indicated that solitary confinement was significantly associated with higher levels of current psychosis symptoms after controlling for demographic factors and clinical characteristics. These findings highlight the need for short-term and long-term community-based mental health interventions and prevention efforts in the postrelease community setting. Social workers and practitioners in community mental health settings should be cognizant of patients' histories with solitary confinement and consider how these experiences may present risks to current mental health symptoms (i.e., early onset psychosis). Future studies are needed on protective mechanisms that may buffer the effects of prior solitary confinement on psychosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7-17
Number of pages11
JournalSocial Work Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2023


  • criminal justice
  • psychosis
  • psychosis-like symptoms
  • psychotic experiences
  • solitary confinement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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