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Teenagers Who Self-Harm: 7 Tips for Parents

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Self-harm, also known as non-suicidal self-injury, is a coping mechanism employed by teenagers to deal with emotional pain, stress, or anxiety.

Self-harm is defined as the intentional and deliberate harm inflicted on one's own body without the intention of suicide.

Self-harm may include cutting, burning, scratching, hitting, or other forms of self-injury that can lead to severe physical and emotional damage.

According to the American Psychological Association, self-harm has become increasingly common among teenagers, with approximately one in five teenagers using self-harm as a coping skill.

As a parent, it can be difficult to know how to help your teenager who is self-harming. You may feel helpless, confused, and unsure of what to do. However, it is important to know that help is available.

In this blog post, we will provide seven tips for parents to help their teenager who may be self-harming.

7 Tips for Parents to Help Their Teenager Who is Self-Harming

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1. Seek Professional Help

The first step in helping your teenager who is self-harming is to seek professional help. Teen counseling, counseling for teenagers, and family counseling can be effective tools for addressing self-harm.

If you live in Katy, Texas, Katy Teen & Family Counseling specializes in counseling teenagers and can provide the necessary support and guidance for both the teenager and the parents.

2. Understand Self-Harm

It is important for parents to have a basic understanding of what self-harm is and the various ways teenagers self-harm. Self-harm can take many forms, including cutting, burning, scratching, hitting, and hair pulling.

It is important to remember that self-harm is a coping mechanism and not a cry for attention. It is a way for teenagers to deal with emotional pain and stress.

3. Create a Safe Space

Creating a safe space for your teenager to express themselves is crucial in helping them heal. This means creating an environment free of judgment, criticism, or shame.

Listen to your teenager without interrupting or offering unwanted advice. Let them know that you are there for them, and that they are not alone.

4. Encourage Healthy Coping Mechanisms

Encourage healthy coping mechanisms in order to replace the dangerous one. Examples of healthy coping mechanisms may include exercise, mindfulness, artistic expression, and spending time with friends and family.

These activities can help your teenager manage their emotions and reduce stress.

5. Educate Yourself

Educate yourself on the triggers and warning signs of self-harm. Triggers may include stressful events, emotional pain, or feelings of isolation. Warning signs may include scars, cuts, bruises, or other injuries that your teenager may try to hide.

6. Create a Support System

Creating a support system for your teenager can also be helpful. This means seeking the support of family and friends, as well as the support of professionals.

Encourage your teenager to attend counseling sessions and support groups to help them build a network of support.

7. Practice Self-Care

Lastly, practice self-care yourself. Caring for a teenager who is self-harming can be emotionally draining, so it is important to take care of yourself as well.

This means practicing self-care activities such as exercise, meditation, or spending time with friends and family.

Wrapping it Up

A mother and father sitting on a couch smiling in the background with a teenage girl in front with her chin in her hand smiling. This represents the need for neurofeedback therapy houston and depression therapist katy, tx. This also represents the need for trauma therapy katy, tx and emdr for ptsd katy, tx 77494.

In conclusion, self-harm among teenagers is a serious issue and should not be ignored. Seeking professional help, understanding self-harm, creating a safe space, encouraging healthy coping mechanisms, educating yourself, creating a support system, and practicing self-care can all be effective ways to help your teenager who is self-harming.

Remember, your teenager is not alone, and help is available.

Katy Teen & Family Counseling: 70+ Combined Years in Specializing in Teen Therapy

Katy, TX & Houston

Having a teenager who is engaging in self-harm behavior can be scary for the parents. Self-harm indicates a deeper and more serious emotional struggle.

Getting help to address the underlying emotional challenge plus the use and practice of coping skills can help a teen overcome self-harming.

The Katy, TX location of Katy Teen & Family Counseling, is located right off of I-10 and Grand Parkway/Hwy 99 in Katy, TX.

Sugar Land Teen & Family Counseling, located in Sugar Land, TX, is conveniently located off of US 90 and Dairy Ashford Road.

If you are ready to meet with one of our teen therapists or young adult therapists, all you need to do is follow these three simple steps:

  1. Contact Katy Teen & Family Counseling

  2. Talk with one of our caring therapists 

  3. Begin the healing process today!

Other Therapy and Counseling Services Offered at Sugar Land Teen & Family Counseling

At Katy Teen & Family Counseling, we provide a variety of therapy approaches that are supported by research and shown to be effective. Some of the teen therapy and young adult counseling we offer are:

Board Certified Neurofeedback Therapy

Peak performance (optimal academic brain performance)

Peak performance (optimal athletic brain performance)

Accelerated Resolution Therapy (ART)

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR Therapy)

Group Therapy for Teens

Body Image

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Couples Therapy & Marriage Counseling

Couples Therapy and Marriage Counseling can be very effective. The secret ingredient to success is each person willing to look at themselves and work to do things differently, together.

When a marriage counselor or couples therapist has this to work with, the success rate can be very high.

Sometimes life will throw challenges at us that create situations that put strain on our marriage or relationship. It may be due to:

  • Choices and actions that have been made by one partner.

  • Financial downturn in the economy creating financial strain.

  • Feeling like you're growing apart.

  • Feeling like you don't have as much in common as you used to.

Whatever the reason may be, marriage counseling and couples therapy can help. Couples therapy and marriage counseling has also been found to work in less time than individual therapy.

If you've worked hard for this relationship and find that there are now barriers in the way of maintaining a healthy relationship, contact us at Katy Teen & Family Counseling. 

If you've worked hard for this relationship and find that there are now barriers in the way of maintaining a healthy relationship, contact us at Sugar Land Teen & Family Counseling. 

About the Author

A man sitting at a desk with a pink, short sleeved polo shirt on, waring glasses, a silver watch, he has a beard and is smiling. Providing emdr for anxiety katy, tx and emdr for depression katy, tx 77494. Also providing neurofeedback in houston and therapy for teen depression in houston, tx.

Jason Drake is a Licensed Clinical Worker - Supervisor (LCSW-S), Board Certified in Neurofeedback, EMDR trained, and a Certified Brain Health Professional through the Amen Clinics.

He has provided therapy to teens, young adults, and families since 2003 and is the Owner & Lead Clinician at Sugar Land Teen & Family Counseling, Katy Counseling for Men, & Katy Teen & Family Counseling.

He specializes in leading teams of high performing therapists who also specialize in teen therapy, counseling young adults, and family counseling.

Jason is also a leader in the field of teen, young adult, and family counseling providing expert coaching and technical assistance to teen Residential Treatment Centers across the country.

Jason is also a regular contributor to various magazines and publications lending his expertise to various mental health related topics. You can check these articles out on our "Featured Articles" service page on our website.

He has also been a guest on Fox 26 Houston and on the podcasts, "Grow a Group Practice" with Alison Pidgeon, "Let's Talk With Jennifer B", and the "Marketing Matters" podcast with Ashley Brock.

If you are ready to start teen counseling or young adult therapy call, text, or email us today!

Phone Number: 281-519-6364

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