The Problem of Teen Self-Injury and How to Help

One issue that has received notice in recent years is teen self-injury without suicidal intentions. The problem is not new, but social awareness can benefit parents as they learn about potential troubles their children may face. The problem goes much deeper than the injuries teens inflict on themselves. They may be in need of emotional and psychological help.

Teen stress

While every teen’s problems are unique, many who injure themselves do so for one of three reasons: relieve stressful feelings, communicate distress, and an attempt to feel emotion. As a concerned parent, it can be frightening when you want to help your teen but do not know why they hurt themselves or where to turn.

Understanding the disorder is a good first step, but it likely will not be enough. Teen rehabilitation centers can help you and your teen through this trying time.

Teens have limited experience in coping with stress and negative emotions. Yet they live in a world that can bombard them with problems. Some teens feel lost and overwhelmed when they are confronted by emotions because they do not know how to cope. Inflicting injuries causes pain that temporarily blocks other problems from their minds.

Other teens want help and they do not know how to ask for it. They may be embarrassed by a situation or frightened that others will not understand them. Some are so afraid of rejection that they do not feel comfortable asking. Teen self-injury gives them a way to gain attention.

Depression can lead to dulled emotions. Some teens struggling with depression grow frustrated with their lack of enthusiasm. They may turn to self-injury as a way to combat low emotional responses. Pain may give them relief because it is a sharper emotion than they experience on a regular basis.

Whatever the cause of teen self-injury, there are people who can help. Teen rehabilitation clinics have both outpatient and inpatient therapy programs that focus on helping teens overcome destructive behavior. Your teen can learn coping mechanisms, communication, and other important skills from a rehabilitation program designed for his or her specific needs. At these clinics gifted counselors talk with your teen to help them overcome their problems.

About the author – Robert Hunt is a recovering addict of 20 years. He has devoted his life to helping others suffering from chemical addictions as well as mental health challenges. Robert maintains many blogs on drug addiction, eating disorders and depression. He is a sober coach and wellness advocate and a prominent figure in the recovery community.

Visit my blog | Follow me on Twitter @RecoveryRobert

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