Self-harming, whether it’s cutting, burning, biting, or hitting yourself, usually is done in secret. For some teens, cutting releases pent up distress and anger, while for others, it might numb emotional pain.
It’s a way of coping with emotional distress that seems to work in the short-term, but isn’t helpful in the long term. The only way to protect yourself from more self-injury is to seek help. It’s important to recognize that self-injury can be dangerous and sometimes lethal. It’s important to take care of your physical injuries, and to seek medical attention right away if you have severe injuries or if you’re thinking about suicide.
Embarrassment and shame often are barriers to asking for help. You might not want to let go of a habit that seems to work for you. It’s important for your physical and mental health, however, that you listen to a friend or to your inner voice that might be suggesting you see a counsellor. Your CMHS counsellor will listen and support you, while exploring the thoughts and feelings that are your triggers.