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Cutting Edge Research: Teen Self Harm Linked to Adult Issues

teen self harm

In a study released in July, BMC Psychiatry found a link between teen self harm and borderline personality disorder in adult years. Researchers found that individuals that suffered from teen self harm had a higher risk of developing borderline personality disorder later down the line. This increases the need to stay aware of the signs of self harm and how to help your teen with it.

Identifying teen self harm

It’s important to keep in mind the symptoms of teen self injury. It’s estimated that about 17.2 percent of adolescents have self-harmed. Knowing the signs will give you the ability to get your child the proper treatment more efficiently.

From the Mayo Clinic, a few signs of self harm include:

  • Claiming to have frequent accidents
  • Wearing long clothing, even during hot seasons
  • Unexplained bruises, cuts, burns, etc.
  • Spending large amount of time alone
  • Emotional/behavioral instability
  • Difficulties in interpersonal relationships
  • Signs of depression

What are the risks?

There are many reasons your child might start to self harm, from stress about to school to the death of a family member. There’s never one factor that causes teen self harm, but there are many factors that increase your child’s risk of partaking in self harming behaviors.

According to Cornell University, these risks might include:

  • Gender. Statistically, girls are more likely to self harm than boys.
  • Friends that self injure. Oftentimes, teens will mimic the self harming behavior from their friends in order to fit in.
  • Life issues. Those who self injure sometimes have issues with personal identity, family, or have experienced a traumatic event in their lifetime.
  • Alcohol/drug abuse. Self harming behavior often happens while the individual is under the influence of a drug.

Getting help for your child

If you believe your child is self harming, it’s imperative that you seek out a medical professional to help. Sometimes traditional therapeutic techniques aren’t enough and adolescents need a larger intervention than they can provide.

Asheville Academy for Girls could help your adolescent daughter. We are a residential treatment center that helps girls, ages 10 to 14. At Asheville Academy, we use comprehensive therapy paired with a therapeutic boarding school setting to inspire and spur on true personal growth in our girls.

For more information on how Asheville Academy can help with teen self harm, contact us today at 800-264-8709.

AUTHOR: Kathryn Huffman
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