Self harm amongst teens

In Health & Lifestyles, Uncategorized on November 22, 2011 at 7:38 pm

By Samantha Lepore


Self-harm includes cutting, burning and self embedding. All of these thing can be extremely dangerous and addictive and could be fatal. Photo courtesy of Google

          The life of a teen is full of struggles, including drama, school stresses, relationship trouble and things much more dreadful such as neglect and bullying. Add hormones into the mix, and you have a dilemma. According to Health Day News, one out of every twelve teens turns to self harm. Most commonly, this is seen by cutting and burning, but also occurs by poisoning/overdose and self embedding, which is when objects are inserted beneath the skin and left there for a period of time or eternally. Self harm is typically seen in females ages 15 to 24, says The Lacet, an online article. This is connected to the use of tobacco, drug abuse and antisocial behavior and can lead to suicide. 90% of teens give up this negative behavior when they reach adulthood, but for some it could be too late.

           The most crucial thing to do in a situation where someone else or you are harming themselves deliberately is to seek help. Letting this become a habit is extremely dangerous because often times it becomes addictive. Certainly, self harm can help relieve emotional pain, but overall it creates more problems than it solves. It is vital that you start off by telling an adult, such as a loved one, a teacher, a counselor, etc. This can be difficult to do, so if it’s too uncomfortable talking in person, write a letter or send an email. After someone responsible knows about your problem, the healing process can begin. Understanding why you cut is vital to this. You must find out what triggers this extreme emotion. To do so, you should work on your emotional awareness. This means to know what you feel and why you feel that way.

           It’s also important you find new things to replace self-harm. This could be writing in a journal, painting, listening to music, and so on. There are other ways to express your anger such as running, using a punching bag or using a stress ball. In a lot of cases, it might be best to refer to a professional for help such as a therapist. It takes some time to find the right therapist, but it is important you ensure that you feel secure and respected by your therapist. They can work with you to stop harming yourself and they are great to talk to about personal problems. They can give you positive feedback and teach you how to manage your emotions in a more constructive way.

           As a human, we all have our struggles and it takes time and experience to get through them, but it is urgent to remember you have your whole life in front of you which will be full of changes, happiness, sadness and success. Sometimes it is best not to focus on the present, but to have hope for the bright future that is awaiting us.


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