Premiere Self-Harm Treatment Center In GA
Knowing that your child is hurting and not being able to relieve the pain is a difficult situation for a parent. Even more difficult than that is watching your child exhibit self-harming behaviors. About 25% of children, more girls than boys, participate in self-harming behaviors, and it can baffle their parents.
Hillside is one of the top residential treatment centers for self-injury in GA. We provide expert care for children with self-harming habits, and we reach out to families with the understanding and support they need when they realize this is going on.
What Causes Self-Harm?
Self-harm is a ritualistic behavior that children, in their teenage years, sometimes engage in. They might cut their skin or scratch it until it bleeds. Some cutting behaviors on the arms can look like suicide attempts, but they are not. Children who engage in self-harming behavior do not always have the intention to commit suicide but they do have a higher risk of suicide.
There are a couple different explanations for self-injury. Some are so emotionally guarded that they feel nothing. The cutting is a way to feel something, even if it’s pain. For others, self-harm is a distraction from more severe emotional pain. Figuring out the reason for self-harm is often difficult and requires skilled professional help. Effective treatment includes identifying the reasons why clients engage in self-harming behavior and what other factors are involved in maintaining the client’s on-going self-harming behavior.
Dangers of Self-Injury
Physically cutting or scratching the skin can leave kids vulnerable to serious infections. The skin is the barrier of protection the body has to keep harmful viruses and bacteria out. People who engage in self-injury are constantly nursing an open wound. That wound can easily get infected, and the infection can spread to other areas of the body.
Self-harming behavior can and often will escalate without treatment. People who engage in self-harming behavior have a higher risk of suicide. The cutting, scratching or hitting is done in response to emotional pain, not the physical pain it causes. It is possible for a child to go too far with the injurious behavior and end up doing more damage than intended. Cutting on the arms, for example, can result in extreme medical emergency or death.
The psychological dangers of self-injury are similar to addiction. The injurious behavior provides a reward for the child — a release of tension or a counterbalance to emotional pain. Any emotional pain can trigger self-harm, and the behaviors will be practiced more often to achieve the relief your child is searching for.
Signs Your Child May Be Engaging in Self-Harm
Many children try to hide self-injury from their parents. They know it’s wrong, but they can’t stop. If you detect these signs, your child may need help:
• Open wounds that don’t heal
• Cuts in the same place
• Wearing long sleeves in warm weather
• Visible scars
• Talking about self injury
• Using a lot of band aids
• Refusing to change clothes in the locker room
• Collecting sharp objects
Contact Hillside for more information on self-harming behaviors or if you think your child may be engaging in self-injurious behavior. We offer both outpatient and residential programs for mental health in Georgia that focus exclusively on children and teens. Our philosophy is to treat the child and bring in the parents to be part of the long-term solution. Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) has been proven to be extremely effective in treating self-harming behavior and we have seen great results in our clients.
It is important to choose the right facility to treat your child’s self-injurious behavior. With our focus on children and teens and a staff fully trained in DBT, Hillside might be the right place for you.
News & Info
Visit some of our top visited pages. This content is for parents, volunteers and the community at large.
On behalf of the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs, Hillside has been accepted as a NATSAP Full Member. Read more on our blog!
It can be difficult to talk about mental illness with family and friends. There is a negative stigma in our society attached to people with mental health issues. You may want to discuss mental illness with friends, for instance, but fear harsh judgments. When a mental illness becomes part of your life, either through personal experience or from one of your children, it is helpful to know how to talk to your friends and family about it. Learn how here!
Hillside is proud to co-sponsor a one day conference on “Early Detection & Prevention of BPD – Bridging the GAP” with the National Education Alliance for Borderline Personality Disorder. Clinicians from Hillside will join other experts in the field to present an informational, educational day for parents, teachers, school counselors and clinicians who interact with kids who have trouble regulating their emotions. Buy tickets now!