Self-harm has become an increasing problem in the United States.

44, 965 American die every year by suicide. There are 123 suicides every. Single. Day.

In 2015, 505,507 people visited a hospital for injuries resulting from self-harm.

These numbers are horrifying and heartbreaking are they not?

We’re here to Addressing Self-Harm Treatment by Learning Self-Care.


Self-Care Versus Self-Harm

Perhaps it seems obvious to say that self-care is the antithesis of self-harm.

The reality is that it’s actually extremely difficult for someone struggling with severe depression, to care about themselves properly.

Depression is a huge epidemic in today’s world. Help is readily available for those who are struggling. Unfortunately,  depression has a way of deterring those who are struggling with it.

They don’t want to find help. They feel they don’t deserve help- they feel hopeless. Alone and simply emotionally and mentally tired.

Self-harm and suicidal thoughts begin to form from depression

Self-harm behaviors may include:

  • cutting
  • eating disorders
  • isolation
  • substance use disorders
  • risky behaviors

Self-harm treatment focuses on addressing the other mental health disorders that may be present.

Often times those people who display self-harm behaviors have tried to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol.

The emotional pain that they feel is intense and overwhelming. They crave an outlet for their emotions.

The inability to express their feelings makes self-harm treatment vital to their recovery.


Recognizing Patterns of Self-Harm

Self-harm treatment can be part of many forms of recovery therapy.

For people who are diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, self-harm treatment is part of the steps used in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy. Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) teaches self-care through self-awareness exercises.

This focus on the “self” helps each person to view themselves and others in a new way to gain more perspective. Without letting the deception of their disorders intensify their emotions.

Each person that goes through Dialectical Behavioral Therapy may gain the skill necessary to de-escalate situations and seek paths of peace.

There are many destructive behaviors that occur in people who suffer from other mental health conditions.

Some of these people may be experiencing a difficult time, and the thoughts of suicide or self-harm behaviors may seem temporary.

In many cases, these seemingly temporary behaviors are actually an indication of something deeper that may need to be addressed in therapy or with a professional setting to ensure the right care is being given.


Learning Self-Care

Taking time for yourself to regroup is an essential part of maintaining mental health – for anyone.

With busy schedules and hectic times, it can feel impossible to take time for yourself. It is in these moments that we need to bring the focus back into our lives and MAKE time! There are several strategies for managing time. From day planners to online calendars, there is bound to be some solution for you.

Start managing your days and scheduling time for yourself. It can be as simple as a bedtime routine. Make a plan to take a longer shower or better yet, soak in the tub.

Treat yourself to a manicure or pedicure. Pick-up a good book at the library. Find a quiet park to enjoy the silence and read.

Self-care practices aren’t lavish or expensive. They can be small, simple things. Self-care doesn’t have to be selfish! Bring a friend with you or family member. Go to an art class. Take a dance lesson.

Find time to enjoy taking care of yourself and being around other people. Being around people may bring an extra level of comfort and happiness.

Finding time to take care of our physical bodies is pertinent to self-care.

Exercising releases endorphins in the brain that tell it to be happy. Moving your body fights off feeling of depression and anxiety.

Simple activities like walking through the mall in winter or taking a short walk outside can help give you time to reflect.

Meditation is remarkably beneficial for practicing self care.

Meditation has been proven to improve health and even reduce inflammation.

This is another aspect of the Dialectical Behavioral Therapy skill sets that is taught by learning mindfulness.


Keeping It All In Perspective

One of the cycles that can create tension are the escalating emotions that we feel in stressful moments.

Learning Dialectical Behavioral Therapy skills can help those with Borderline Personality Disorder to calm those emotions and keep things from getting out of hand.

For other people with generalized depression or anxiety; Dialectical Behavioral Therapy can still be extremely educational.

With substance use disorder, therapy and addressing other mental health concerns is part of the long-term recovery plan.

Many of us face unspeakable struggles. There are challenges, trials and experiences that change us perminently.

It is ok to feel. It is ok to find help.

Trauma has a way of changing our thinking. For those that have had experiences, big and small, trauma needs to be addressed.

Reading self-help forums online may work for some, most people could benefit from seeking professional advice.

A simple consultation may point you in the right direction to find the help that you need for your unique situation.

The trauma-exposed patient’s psyche has a built-in defense system with dissociative activities, yet holds on to fragmented pieces to attempt to cope a traumatic life event.

The fragmented pieces simply continue to fragment.

This ability becomes a way of coping with daily life events and at times dissociation is a hidden gift by the psychological self.
HeartPath Practitioner


Self-Harm Treatment

Whatever situation you may find yourself in, it is important to seek self-harm treatment.

If you are experiencing thoughts of suicide, symptoms of depression and anxiety or if you are struggling through your days and don’t know why – find help!

There are community support groups, out-patient programs, residential treatment programs or other behavioral health programs that can teach you the skills necessary to learn self-care practices and find happiness. Finding mental health help online may be the way you choose to go, that’s fine, too!

The admissions team at New Roads Behavioral Health is ready to help you now. Give us a call. 888-358-8998


Need more ideas for self-care routines?

Follow @newroadsbh on Instagram and watch for our #selfcaresunday posts or #motivationmonday posts! We post a few great ideas there each week.