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What causes Self-harm, Is it a mental illness? – CBT Kenya

What you need to know about self-harm|CBT Kenya

Self-harm is a behaviour and not an illness. People self-harm to cope with distress or to communicate that they are distressed. For many people who self-harm, the act of harming themselves is something they try to keep secret.

Research shows that people who self-harm often struggle with problem-solving, and they find it particularly hard to ask for help. They tend to forget how they solved a similar problem in the past, and they get stuck when trying to solve a current problem.

Why do people self-harm?

Some people do it because they don’t know how else to cope with pressures from family, school and friends.Drinking a lot of alcohol can significantly increase the risk of self-harm in young people who are already feeling stressed.

Some people may have one or two close friends who know that they self-harm, but in many cases family and friends might only suspect that something is going. Below are some of the reasons that cause self-harm.

  • When the level of emotional pressure becomes too high it acts as a safety valve – a way of relieving the tension.
  • When it’s too difficult to talk to anyone, it’s a form of communication about unhappiness and a way of acknowledging the need for help.
  • Cutting makes the blood take away the bad feelings. Pain can make you feel more alive when feeling numb or dead inside.
  • Some people self-harm with the intention of ending their life or they may be unsure about whether they want to survive.
  • Being a young person who is not under the care of their parents, or young people who have left a care home.

Who can you talk to?

  • It is important to tell someone you trust and feel comfortable with, as they will be able to help and support you.
  • There are no rules about how you should tell someone. The most important thing is that you feel comfortable and trust the person you decide to tell.
  • Set time aside to talk to them. Remember you can set the pace and it is up to you how much you want to tell them.
  • If you find speaking about it too difficult, you can tell someone in writing or in an email.
  • It is okay to ask for help before you hurt yourself! About half of all people who attend hospital after self-harm do not attend hospital again with the problem. Treatment can teach you new coping skills.

If you, or someone you know, need help with their self-harm, then look no further.Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), problem-solving therapy (PST) and interpersonal therapy (IPT) are short-term forms of psychological treatments.

At CBT Kenya, we have specialist who are ready to listen and talk you through. You can give us a call on 0739 935 333/0756 454 585 or visit our website for more details on what we do. We are located at Kims Court,Theta Lane, Off Lenana road.

Author: cbtkeadmin
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