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self-harm

Adolescents Who Harm Themselves

The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry defines self-injury among adolescents as, “Self-injury is the act of deliberately destroying body tissue, at times to change a way of feeling.” Self-injury is seen differently by groups and cultures within society. This appears to have become more popular lately, especially among adolescents. The causes and severity of self-injury can vary and can be very complex. Some examples of self-injury include:

PositiveTip for

Bullying Increases Risk of Self-harm

Half of 12 year old children who self-harmed were exposed to bullying.

Bullying by peers is a growing problem on both sides of the Atlantic, with 25% of children in Britain reporting being victimized. Researchers have found that exposure to bullying in childhood increases by more than threefold the likelihood that a child or adolescent will attempt non-suicidal self-harm. Victimized twins were found to have a higher risk than their non-victimized sibling.

PositiveTip: Schools and parents must do all they can to eliminate peer bullying and victimization.