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Self-Injury

Self-injury is the act of intentionally harming oneself. The harm is often in the form of cutting oneself, but can also be burning or any other form of superficial wounding of oneself. Self-injurious behavior is often directly related to a person’s emotional state; for this reason, it is a topic that is best discussed with a mental health provider. Self-injury is also related to a person’s upbringing and nuclear family. Family therapists must not only be aware of the practice of self-injury but also the best therapeutic strategies to use with an individual who engages in the practice, as well as with his or her family or partners. This entry describes the causes and types of self-injury and characteristics found in individuals who self-injure. The ...

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