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What is Self Harm?

teenager problemSelf-harming is when someone chooses to inflict pain on themselves in some way. You may self-harm if you are feeling anxious, depressed or stressed or if you are being bullied and feel that you do not have a support network or way to deal with your problems. The issues then ‘build up’ to the point where you feel like you are going to explode. Young people who self-harm often talk about the ‘release’ that they feel after they have self-harmed, as they use it as a mechanism to cope with their problems.

What are the symptoms?

If you are self-harming, you may be cutting or burning yourself, biting your nails excessively, developing an eating disorder or taking an overdose of tablets. It can also include taking drugs or excessive amounts of alcohol. It is usually a sign that something is wrong.


How is it treated?

  • If you can talk to someone, this may help how you are feeling.
  • Talk to your GP about how you feel and any other issues you may have as well as the self-harm for example if you are being bullied or if you are feeling anxious or depressed as it may be that tackling the underlying issues will help you to cope with problems without self-harming.


Watch video clip

CAMHS consultant –  Johan Redelinghuys explains Self Harm, the symptoms and treatments in this short video clip.


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