Individuals who suffer from chronic depression are at risk of exhibiting self harm behavior (such as making scars), in which they intentionally injure themselves. Traditionally, the practice of self-harm was tied to cultural rituals: sometimes, it’s been symbolic of pride, defiance, or self-punishment. However, if scarring or another form of self-harm is a symptom of a mental or emotional disorder, it should be treated along with other symptoms, as it is potentially suicidal. In this post, let’s learn more about the specifics of self harm scars, as well as the causes, consequences, risks, and other aspects of self harm behavior.
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Basics of Research on Self Harm Scars and Other Injuries
The term “self-mutilation” surfaced in the early 20th century and became more widely known from the 1938 book Man Against Himself by Karl Menninger. In his studies, the author observed and categorized self-destructive and suicidal behaviors. He also coined the term “partial suicide” as a non-fatal expression associated with a death wish and attributed the inflicting self-injury to unresolved shame, doubt, guilt, and alienation.
Today, the common term for an issue when an individual injures themselves through cuts or poisons is called “deliberate self-harm” (DSH). This mental condition that leads to physical harm has escalated in recent decades. The damage can be permanent, but there are ways to mitigate and heal less severe wounds.
Why People Self-Harm
According to an article published by scientists on the NCBI/NIH website, the causes of self-harm are often linked to physical and sexual abuse or a history of mental illness. It may also result from alcohol or drug abuse. Also, it was noted that adolescence is the age group in which there’s been the biggest spike in cases, particularly for young women. In some cases, socially-detached individuals may carve self harm scars on their foreheads. Sometimes cutting is a daring statement that cries out for attention; other times, it’s a sign of an unhappy childhood. Some people cut themselves to see blood as a reminder that they’re alive, and other victims claim that scarring gives them relief from a haunting mindset or emotional numbness.
What Can Happen to People Who Self-Harm?
The signs of DSH tend to be cuts, scratches, bruises, and scars covering the body. Self-harm can unfold in multiple ways, such as the following:
- Cutting yourself with a sharp object
- Punching yourself or hitting a wall with your fist
- Burning yourself with a cigarette or lighter
- Pulling hair from your head and body
- Poking yourself
- Bruising yourself in a rough activity
The types of wounds that result from self-harm range from minor to extremely acute. Here are some of the physical injuries that can happen from self-harm:
- Thigh scars
- Wrist-cutting scars
- Forehead and other facial scars
- Eye and ear removal
It’s important for self-harm victims to work with a counselor or a therapist and get support from loved ones to avoid self-harm addiction. Whatever the reason is behind self-injury, it’s not good for the body and can lead to a harmful infection.
Self harm scars can lead to serious health issues. Connect with EZCare professionals today to get the right help.
How Do Self-Harm Scars Fade?
A deliberate self-harm wound to the skin may be permanent. If self-harm through scars is visible to the public, it can also lead to social alienation. Mild scars, though, may eventually fade without treatment. Also, it’s possible to give yourself self harm scars treatment at home if the wounds aren’t too deep. When speaking about how to cover cutting scars and what heals scars fast, there are different options. The most commonly used means include silicone gel products sold at pharmacies as they can soften, flatten and fade scars.
How Do You Get Rid of Deep Scars from Cutting?
Patients who suffer DSH episodes should visit a scar clinic and get a structured assessment of both their physical and psychological state. A physician will examine the injury locations, quantity, sizes, and types of the wounds. Following the diagnosis, the physician will explain the treatment options, which include:
- Allowing scars to heal themselves
- Camouflaging wounds with “medical tattoos”
- Tissue expansion
- Staged excision based on lab tests
- Needling to blend scars with surrounding tissue
- Surgery to install a skin substitute
Healing of Self-Harm Scars
A person who commits deliberate and acute self-harm should be taken to a hospital to get immediate attention for physical and mental issues. Many individuals who give themselves self harm scars regret it, which adds to their troubled psychological state. Meanwhile, old cutting scars, if infected, can trigger further health problems. It is important to have a complete psychological evaluation for any mental health issues causing self-harm tendencies. A mental health assessment is crucial to rule out the underlying factors contributing to self-harm.
Another fact that should be taken into account is that DSH wounds tend to be flat and linear, making them unresponsive to steroid injections. Modern medical facilities use lasers in conjunction with skin grafting, and the result is usually a successful full wound closure. This procedure can take several weeks for a full recovery.
If you suffer from self-harm (such as scarring), you should seek immediate help from medical professionals. Such behavior can be a sign of suicidal thoughts, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, or other issues. Clinical presentation of self harm scars can help guide an individual back to a balanced state, while other solutions to improve one’s mental state include developing relationship skills, problem-solving skills, and strengthening self-esteem. Contact our health experts today for research-backed solutions to mental health problems.