People self-harm to escape from unbearable feelings, gain relief from tension, change the behaviour of other people, perhaps to “get back” at them, or as a cry for help. Self-harm can be considered deliberate behaviour resulting in damage to body tissue without intent to die. It is a symptom of serious psychological distress or mental illness, rather than an illness in itself. It is more prevalent in females, survivors of sexual abuse or trauma, and people with depressive symptoms.

Ways to help people who self-harm include:

Seeking help is the first step to overcoming this problem. Concerns that you may have about self-harm can be addressed by contacting Counselling and Psychological Services.

External links and resources

  1. Self-harm and Young People,Orygen Youth Health
  2. What is self-harm
  3. Self-harm links