Cutting is injuring yourself on purpose—by scratching or cutting your body with a sharp object—breaking the skin and causing bleeding. It is a type of self-injury or self-mutilation.
When cuts or burns from self-injury heal, they often leave scars and marks, which the cutter may cover so no one else knows what they are doing to themselves.
Adolescents are at an increased risk with six to 10 percent of teens reporting some form of self-harm.
Self-harm occurs in approximately one to four percent of adults, with chronic and severe self-injury occurring among approximately one percent of the population.
Seventy percent of teens engaging in self-injury behavior have made at least one suicide attempt, according to Teen Help. One percent chronic and severe self-injury occurring among approximately one percent of the population. Eight percent of 14-19 year olds, reported engaging in self-harm, according to a report filed by Dr. Paul Moran.
Although cutting is generally done without the intention of hurting oneself seriously, cuts can go deeper than intended and lead to a need for stitches, serious infection and even hospitalization.
Cutting often becomes a habit. It can even become a compulsive behavior.
HOW TO GET HELP
It’s important to seek help and talk with someone you trust. Try to identify the underlying triggers that lead to your cutting. A mental health professional can help identify these triggers, so don’t be afraid to ask for help. When you find a therapist or counselor, you’ll be able to work through your feelings of deep emotional pain or distress.
Talk to a trusted adult such as a parent, physician or counselor.