Processing causes of self-harm to find healthier alternatives
The term self-harm refers to the act of deliberately injuring oneself by cutting, hitting, ingesting harmful substances, burning, scratching, or other forms of inflicting pain or damage to one's own body. The desire to self-harm can be caused by the need to release strong feelings of anger, sadness, or anxiety. Early childhood trauma including physical, sexual, and verbal abuse may be a factor in determining later self-harm habits. All genders may experience self-harming tendencies, but they may take different forms.
If you suspect a loved one of harming themselves watch for the tendency to wear long sleeves or pants to cover scars or wounds. Individuals may also excuse signs of damage as being accident prone. Speaking with a counselor can help individuals pinpoint what is causing the tendency to self-harm and work toward a state of wellbeing.