What is self-harm?
Self-harm is when someone intentionally damages or injures their body. There are many different ways people can intentionally harm themselves, such as cutting or burning their skin, punching or hitting themselves and poisoning themselves with tablets or toxic chemicals. In most cases, people who self-harm do it to help them cope with overwhelming emotional issues, which may be caused by:
- Social problems – such as being bullied, having difficulties at work or school, coming to terms with their sexuality, debt or unemployment
- Trauma – such as physical or sexual abuse, the death of a close family member or friend, or having a miscarriage
- Psychological problems – such as having repeated thoughts or voices telling them to self-harm, disassociating (losing touch with who they are and with their surroundings), or borderline personality disorder.