Last Updated 08 Apr 2020

Possible Solutions to Self-Harm

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[Enter title here] A large number of people in western society have found self-mutilation as a means to “escape” from the problem’s haunting their everyday life. The act of cutting oneself has been proven to release chemical compounds into the body to momentarily clear the mind of such problems. These compounds, known as endorphins, relieve the body of whatever tension and stress that is undergone in the individual’s life.

Harming one’s self is a serious problem that must be assessed and treated in an appropriate manner that will not only stop the act within the individual but also remove the source of such trauma in their life. The cause of such actions has been known to come in from a large multitude of personal problems. Problems such as an unsuitable household, difficulties within a person’s social background, or even the image they see within themselves. Professor Keith Hawton oversaw a study taken over the amount of adolescents who admitted to inflicting harm upon themselves.

His survey took place in forty-one schools involving 6,020 subjects aged fifteen to sixteen. The results were that “398 (6. 8%) participants reported an act of deliberate self harm in the past year” (Hawton 2002). According to the results, more females admitted to this act than males. Of those females who were accountable to deliberate self-harm, they confessed the causes being their “friends, self harm by family members, drug misuse, depression, anxiety, impulsivity, and low self esteem” (Hawton 2002).

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The factors found within the males were drug use, suicidal behavior found within their friends and family, and low self-esteem. Patricia and Peter Adler discuss the effects that undergone by the individual through the expectations of those around that person. In their writing, “The Glorified Self” the Adlers present how a society creates an image of those within it and the pressure placed upon those people create an inner conflict “between their desire for recognition, flattery, and importance and the inclination to keep feeding this self-affirming element” (Adler 195).

As society continues to surround the individual, the pressure increases as the person begins to take on a role which they may not feel is best suited for them, yet must be upheld in order to feel better accepted within their society. Such expectations are found in those closest to that person: parents, siblings, friends or anyone who could affect that person’s life. These expectations can create a dilemma within the individual, whether they wish to be who they want or who they are required to be.

Through the burden of deciding on they wish to become, the troubled person begins to turn away from the sources of their problems and look for a quick escape. That escape varies among the individual experiencing such complications in their life, anything from substance abuse to physically abusing their own body. The human body finds whatever means necessary in order to cope with the difficulties presented in their life. This coping mechanism is the brain’s way of releasing the stress that builds up over time from dealing with whatever obstacles that are laid out before the person.

In order to stop such actions taking place, the source of the problem(s) must then be removed, or tuned down enough to no longer give the desire for the person to find a momentary escape. Removing all sources of responsibilities in a person’s life is nearly impossible. Instead of removing the source of the problem, a more possible solution is to show the people undergoing such problems that they aren’t alone in their responsibilities. Giving out a hand to those in need will show them that they don’t need to hold their problems to themselves.

Encourage a troubled individual to express their fears, problems, and concerns in hopes that in doing so, that person may then be able to realize that as tough as things may be, they are never alone. Another way to relieve stress in a positive manner is meditation. True this seems like it won’t do much, but “that small amount of peace in your day can help you deal with or even release stress” (Alvarez 2012). There are countless ways to combat the problems in an individual’s life, remedies that expand anywhere from eating healthy to taking a few minutes in their day to meditate or exercise.

Sources Cited Adler, Patricia A. , and Peter Adler. "The Glorified Self. " Social Theory. Ed. Roberta Garner. 2nd ed. [S. l. ]: Univ Of Toronto, 2009. 195-207. Print. Alvarez, Manny. "10 Ways to Relieve Stress Naturally. " Newsgroup. Fox News. Fox News, 9 Aug. 2012. Web. 31 Mar. 2013. Hawton, Keith. "Deliberate Self Harm in Adolescents: Self Report Survey in Schools in England. " Ncbi. nlm. nih. gov/. National Center for Biotechnology Information, 23 Nov. 2002. Web. 31 Mar. 2013.

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