Adolescent self-mutilation diagnosis & treatment

Community Mental Health Department, University of South Alabama, Mobile, Alabama 36688-0002, USA.
Journal of Psychosocial Nursing and Mental Health Services (Impact Factor: 0.72). 01/2008; 45(12):19-23.
Source: PubMed


Self-mutilation is complicated and difficult to diagnose. Its incidence among adolescents has increased during the past 10 years. Most mental health professionals discover that the behavior has been part of patients' lives long before their initial visit and that patients have become very good at hiding their behavior. The literature on self-mutilation is increasing, but newer statistics, specifically about cutting and picking behaviors, need to be assessed. The disorder often co-exists with another disorder that requires psychotropic medications, the administration of which should be managed by psychiatric clinicians who specialize in children and adolescents. A multidisciplinary team is necessary to achieve the best outcomes.

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    • "Self-mutilation can be a way to avoid committing suicide (Favazza, 1996; Rissanen et al., 2008b; Solomon & Farrand, 1996; Sueymoto, 1998; Williams & Bydalek, 2007), but it also offers a possibility to carry it out (Machoian, 2001; Rissanen et al., 2008a, 2008b; Scoliers et al., 2009). However, selfmutilation and attempted suicide should not be considered as synonyms, because they mean different things (Cerdorian, 2005), and there are significant differences in attitudes towards life among adolescents who have attempted suicide and those who have self-injured. "
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this review article is to present current knowledge of self-mutilation among adolescents as a phenomenon and to define what kind of knowledge is lacking based on existing literature. The literature searches were executed in the CINAHL and Medline databases in 2010. The analysed data consisted of 126 articles and inductive content analysis was carried out. Existing knowledge of self-mutilation was categorized into the following two classes: (1) self-mutilation as a phenomenon and (2) caring for persons who self-mutilate or self-harm.
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    ABSTRACT: The increasing prevalence of self-injurious behavior (SIB) among mainstream adolescents has led to a growing body of research. This maladaptive behavior is used as a means of regulating negative emotions. Best practices regarding therapy are unclear, with many types of intervention being tried. Analysis of 36 qualitative and quantitative studies, reviews, and theory articles addressing adolescent SIB was conducted looking at aspects such as history, demographics, motivators, risk factors, techniques, and treatment options. An explosion of research is surfacing to determine effective care through creative approaches. Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) shows great promise. The school setting is a natural environment for the identification and intervention of SIB which requires knowledge of indicators and risk factors. Education of school staff will increase awareness and enhance communication among disciplines. A circle of care can then surround the student to provide support and guidance while the proper interventions for emotional regulation and individual health promotion are developed.
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    ABSTRACT: Suicidal behavior is a significant global public health problem. Despite this, many health care professionals remain unaware of the distinction among suicidal behavior, self-mutilation, and deliberate self-harm. The aim of this study was to conduct a concept analysis of suicidal behavior. Walker and Avant's 8-step method of concept analysis was used to examine the concept of suicidal behavior. Sources for analysis were identified using a systematic search of Medline, CINAHL, ProQuest Nursing & Allied Health Source, and the reference lists of related journal articles. Suicidal behavior was found to be associated with a constellation of external hazards and internal crises, lack of coping mechanisms and social support structures, and degree of suicidal intent, which, in the worst-case scenario, results in successful suicide. The antecedents of suicidal behavior are vulnerability characteristics that make painful events seem unbearable, and the consequences are death or failed suicide. In cases of failure, the medical consequences may be serious and long lasting. Defining the concept of suicidal behavior provides a basis for public health nurses to better understand suicidal behavior, thus improving their ability to care for suicidal patients during home visits.
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