Self-Injury

Help for Self-Injury at Lukin Center

Expert Self-Injury Treatment in Northern New Jersey

Self-injury (also called self-mutilation or self-harm) means hurting yourself on purpose in order to cope with difficult feelings. Self harm can take many forms. One of the most common expressions is cutting, burning or deep scratching of the skin. 

Self-injury is not the same as a suicide attempt; the person cutting or burning themselves is not trying to end their life. It is a way of reacting to or expressing frustration, anger, sadness, or other painful emotions. Hurting the body can feel like a temporary relief from those feelings. However, the relief does not last and the act of cutting or burning often creates its own set of issues, like shame and guilt. 

Self-injury can affect people of all ages, and often starts in the early teenage years and often continues into adulthood. Many people who self-injure share certain personality traits; they might be considered perfectionists, overachievers, or very sensitive people.

Self-Injury at a Glance

  • Self Injury often begins in adolescence or young adulthood
  • Can be cutting, scratching, burns, or other forms of self harm
  • Is not the same as a suicide attempt
  • Is a way of coping with difficult feelings or memories
  • Can lead to serious physical injury
  • Typically treated with individual therapy and/ or medication
Troubled woman struggling with self injury stares out car window

Self-injury is usually connected to another issue, such as depression, anxiety, or past trauma.

Self-injury is often a response to deeper issues that should be addressed with compassionate individual therapy and other treatment methods. Many people who injure themselves are dealing with past trauma, including verbal, physical, or emotional abuse. Self-harm also accompanies eating disorders, intense pressure, or untreated mental health issues.

At Lukin Center, we help patients get to the bottom of the issues that trigger self-injury. Our qualified therapists can help you with focused interventions, concrete goals, and proven treatment options to help you find relief from self injury and find new, healthy ways of coping with difficult feelings.

What are the Symptoms and Treatments for Self-Injury?

If you’re concerned about your own self-harm or are worried someone you love is injuring themselves, it’s important to seek help.

Signs of self-harm may include:

  • Unexplained scars
  • Scars or scratches in patterns; words or symbols carved on skin
  • Unexplained scratches and bruises
  • Hitting, punching or banging one’s head
  • Inserting sharp objects under skin
  • Rubbing skin until it burns
  • Keeping arms and legs covered in hot temperatures
  • Other impulsive behaviors
  • Feeling hopeless or worthless

Like a drug addiction, over time, the person requires more significant pain or injury to feel relief they’re seeking from self-harm, eventually putting them in serious physical danger.

How can Lukin Center Help Me with Self-Injury? 

At Lukin Center, we treat self-injury issues by addressing the root causes of self-harm. Our approach begins with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and individual sessions with an experienced therapist. A therapist can help you understand the reasons behind self-harming behaviors and help you learn to cope with and manage difficult thoughts and feelings. Medication for self-harm can be an effective tool as well, helping to ease the symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorders, anxiety, depression, and other issues that can lead to self-harm. 

If you or your loved one are experiencing signs of self-harm, don’t wait to get help. Lukin Center clinicians must maintain the highest possible degrees and certifications in their fields, including best practices in treating the causes of self-injury in adults, teens, and children. As one of the largest mental health therapy practices in Northern New Jersey, Lukin Center gives you access to more highly trained therapists and a broader range of specialties, so you can get exactly the help you need. We’ll help you connect with the right mental health professional to get the results you want.