Solutions

Combating Self Harm

What is self harm?

Self-harm or self injury refers to people deliberately hurting their bodies and is often done in secret without anyone else knowing. Some young people do it once, while others do it to cope with particularly stressful events or as a way of coping over time. When they feel pressured or distressed they self-harm; it becomes their habit for dealing with difficult emotions.

The most common type of self-harm among young people is cutting, but there are many other types of self-harm including burning or punching the body, or picking skin or sores. People who deliberately injure themselves are not trying to kill themselves, they are trying to find a way to cope with difficulties and distress.

Why do people Self Harm themselves?

Many young people describe self-harm as a way of coping with feeling numb, or intense pain, distress or unbearable negative feelings, thoughts or memories. They are trying to change how they feel by replacing their emotional pain or pressure with physical pain. Some people harm themselves because they feel alone, and hurting themselves is the only way they feel real or connected. Others self-harm to punish themselves due to feelings of guilt or shame or to ‘feel again’.

For most young people self-harm is a coping mechanism, not a suicide attempt. However, people who repeatedly self-harm may also begin to feel as though they cannot stop, and this may lead to feeling trapped, hopeless and suicidal. People who self-harm are also more likely than the general population to feel suicidal and to attempt suicide.

Self-harm can be something that someone tries once, or it can become a habit as they search for relief from distress. The problem is that this relief is only temporary, and the circumstances usually remain. Some common areas which may lead to self harm is:

1) Difficulties or disputes with parents

2) School or work problems

3) Anxiety

4) Depression

5) Relationship problems

6) Low self esteem

7) Bullying

8) Drug or Alcohol Abuse

9) Distress and Intense emotions

How to Combat or help people who self harm ?

1) Confide in someone

If you’re ready to get help for cutting or self-harm, the first step is to confide in another person. It can be scary to talk about the very thing you have worked so hard to hide, but it can also be a huge relief to finally let go of your secret and share what you’re going through.

Deciding whom you can trust with such personal information can be difficult. Choose someone who isn’t going to gossip or try to take control of your recovery. Ask yourself who in your life makes you feel accepted and supported. It could be a friend, teacher, religious leader, counselor, or relative. But you don’t necessarily have to choose someone you are close to.

Eventually, you’ll want to open up to your inner circle of friends and family members, but sometimes it’s easier to start by talking to an adult who you respect—such as a teacher, religious leader, or counselor – who has a little more distance from the situation and won’t find it as difficult to be objective.

2) Learn to manage overwhelming stress or emotions

Understanding why you cut or self-harm is a vital first step toward your recovery. If you can figure out what function your self-injury serves, you can learn other ways to get those needs met—which in turn can reduce your desire to hurt yourself.

3) Professional treatment for self harm

You may also need the help and support of a trained professional as you work to overcome the self-harm habit, so consider talking to a therapist. A therapist can help you develop new coping techniques and strategies to stop self-harming, while also helping you get to the root of why you cut or hurt yourself.

Remember, self-harm doesn’t occur in a vacuum. It’s an outward expression of inner pain—pain that often has its roots in early life. There is often a connection between self-harm and childhood trauma.
Self-harm may be your way of coping with feelings related to past abuse, flashbacks, negative feelings about your body, or other traumatic memories. This may be the case even if you’re not consciously aware of the connection.

Sources : Helpguide.com and beyondblue.org.au

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Help for parents with troubled teenagers

Today this post will be about how to help parents with troubled teenagers. Well firstly may i say that parenting is never an easy job and especially with teenagers. Sometimes your growing teen may be depressed, violent, abusive into alcohol or drugs, or maybe perhaps they might be engaging in reckless behavior. You may feel exhausted from lying awake at night worrying about where your child is, who he or she is with, and what they’re doing. You may despair over failed attempts to communicate, the endless fights, and the open defiance. Or you may live in fear of your teen’s violent mood swings and explosive anger. While parenting a troubled teen can often seem like an impossible task, there are steps you can take to ease the chaos at home and help your teen transition into a happy, successful young adult.

 

The Beginning 

As teenagers start to grow up and find their identity and independence in this world , they may experience behavioral changes that can seem bizarre and unpredictable to parents. You may now start to think, What happened to my sweet, adorable obedient child whom i couldn’t live a minute without but now my child doesn’t want to be seen near me or greets everything I say with a roll of the eyes or the slam of a door? Well unfortunately,theses are the actions of a normal teenager. . A troubled teen faces behavioral, emotional, or learning problems beyond the normal teenage issues. They may repeatedly practice at-risk behaviors such as violence, skipping school, drinking, drug use, sex, self-harming, shoplifting, or other criminal acts. Or they may exhibit symptoms of mental health problems like depression, anxiety, or eating disorders. Therefore I want to emphasize the point that parents should understand how important it is to be cautious of a normal adolescent behavior which may normal during adolescent development, and which can point to more serious problems.normal during adolescent development, and which can point to more serious problems. lead to a serious problem. 

Warning Signs of a Troubled Teenager 

1) Changing appearance can be a red flag if it’s accompanied by problems at school or other negative changes in behavior, or if there’s evidence of cutting and self-harm or extreme weight loss or weight gain.

2)Constant escalation of arguments, violence at home, skipping school, getting in fights, and run-ins with the law are all red flag behaviors that go beyond the norm of teenage rebellion.

3)Rapid changes in personality, falling grades, persistent sadness, anxiety, or sleep problems could indicate depressionbullying, or another emotional health issue. Take any talk about suicide seriously.

4) When alcohol or drug use becomes habitual, especially when it’s accompanied by problems at school or home, it may indicate a substance abuse issue or other underlying problems.

5)Red flags include a sudden change in peer group (especially if the new friends encourage negative behavior), refusing to comply with reasonable rules and boundaries, or avoiding the consequences of bad behavior by lying. Your teen spending too much time alone can also indicate problems.

Seeking Help 

If your child has one of the following warning signs of a troubled teenagers above then you must take action ASAP. Consult a counselor, therapist, or other mental health professional for help finding appropriate treatment. Whatever problems your teen is experiencing, it is not a sign that you’ve somehow failed as a parent. Instead of trying to assign blame for the situation, focus on your teen’s current needs. The first step to doing this is to find a way to connect with him or her.  To open the lines of communication you must :

1) Be aware of your own stress levels. If you’re angry or upset, now is not the time to try to communicate with your teen. Wait until you’re calm and energized before starting a conversation. You’re likely to need all the patience and positive energy you can muster.

2) Be there for your teen. An offer to chat with your teen over coffee will probably be greeted with a sarcastic put-down or dismissive gesture, but it’s important to show you’re available. Insist on sitting down for mealtimes together with no TV or other distractions, and attempt to talk to your teen then. Don’t get frustrated if your efforts are greeted by nothing more than monosyllabic grunts or shrugs; you may have to eat a lot of dinners in silence, but when your teen does want to open up, he or she will have the opportunity to do so.

3) Expect rejection. Your attempts to connect with your teen may often be met with anger, irritation, or other negative reactions. Stay relaxed and allow your teen space to cool off. Try again later when you’re both calm. Successfully connecting to your teen will take time and effort. Don’t be put off; persevere and the breakthrough will come.

4) Encourage exercise. Even a little regular exercise can help ease depression, boost energy and mood, relieve stress, regulate sleep patterns, and improve your teen’s self esteem. If you struggle getting your teen to do anything but play video games, encourage him or her to play activity-based video games or “exergames” that are played standing up and moving around simulating dancing, skateboarding, soccer, or tennis, for example. Once exercise becomes a habit, encourage your teen to try the real sport or to join a club or team.

5) Ensure your teen gets enough sleep. Sleep deprivation can make a teen stressed, moody, irritable, and lethargic, and cause problems with weight, memory, concentration, decision-making, and immunity from illness. You might be able to get by on six hours a night and still function at work, but your teen needs 8.5 to 10 hours of sleep a night to be mentally sharp and emotionally balanced. Encourage better sleep by setting consistent bedtimes, and removing TVs, computers, and other electronic gadgets from your teen’s room. the light from these suppresses melatonin production and stimulates the mind, rather than relaxing it. Suggest your teen tries listening to music or audio books at bedtime instead.

6) Take care of your self. Don’t be stressed and try to take care of both your health and you childrens health 

 

I hope this helps every parent out there. And I hope these solutions are sufficient enough to give you an understanding of the teenage behavior. 

Main Source: HelpGuide.org 

 

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