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What triggers Self-Harm in a person?

Self-harm is a behavior in which a person harms themself. The most prevalent kind of self-harm is when people cut or scrape themselves with sharp instruments. Self-harm, on the other hand, encompasses a wide range of behaviors, such as burning your skin, taking dangerous chemicals, or punching oneself. Self-harm might include binge drinking or becoming addicted to alcohol, drugs/drug overdose, or having an eating issue.

It's also worth noting that self-harm is not the same as attempting suicide. Self-harm can lead to suicide, but it is frequently unintentional. Self-harm is frequently a coping mechanism and an escape from emotional suffering, not a desire to die.

Why Do People Hurt Themselves?

When it comes to self-harm, many people wonder why anybody would engage in such damaging behavior. Those who have self-harmed or are self-harming frequently do so because they have experienced painful or traumatic events in their lives. These events can undermine people's self-esteem, and if they believe they have no support or emotional outlet, their feelings (such as rage or grief) might spiral inward.

As a result, self-harming or cutting is frequently used to express or release feelings. In other words, self-harming can assist a person in coping with feelings that they are unable to deal with (loneliness, anger, sadness, etc). Because it is a coping method, people may have varied motives for self-harm, which takes us back to the question of why people do it.

A person may feel the urge to self-harm for a variety of reasons. Among the causes are:

  • to let go of feelings and stress

  • to communicate sentiments that they are unable to articulate verbally

  • to divert their attention away from their feelings

  • to feel in control — for some individuals, simply knowing they can self-harm as a means of coping with their feelings is enough to feel some relief

  • to punish oneself, particularly if they are feeling guilty or humiliated over something

  • to feel genuine/alive

Some self-harmers would also cover up or hide their wounds or scars because they are embarrassed and don't want others to know because they are afraid of how others would respond. This concern of other people's reactions stems from the negative attitude that may surround self-harm as well as the assumptions that can be made about persons who have self-harmed.

Self-harmers, on the other hand, should not be frightened to come out because this negative attitude is fading. The healthcare sector currently has standards for treating self-harm patients, such as evaluating the causes behind the behavior and assisting them in adopting healthier tactics. When those who self-harm come forward, there are specialists who will treat them with compassion and understanding.

What Kinds of Assistance Are There?

We may all become anxious and believe we are unable to deal. As a result, we all require assistance at times. There are several types of assistance available for self-harm. As an example:

  • Speaking with a trustworthy family member or friend is frequently the first step toward rehabilitation.

  • Instead of self-harming, use creative expression, such as drawing, painting, writing a diary, or playing an instrument.

  • Work on self-esteem by making a list of good things about yourself.

  • Develop new coping strategies, such as pinging a rubber band against your skin instead of cutting.

Professional help to stop self-harming behavior is also available, and may include sessions with a Counselor, Psychologist, or Psychotherapist. A professional can assist in the development of new coping mechanisms as well as methods for preventing self-harm. A professional can also assist a person cope with the stress or underlying issues that are leading them to self-harm. Discussing and dealing with this stress or these underlying causes is frequently the most effective strategy to prevent someone from continuing to self-harm.


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