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Research Article Open Access
This study investigated characteristics and variables associated with self-harm in patients in a psychiatric unit which accepted children aged 7-13 years. It sought specifically to determine the role of emotion regulation as a motivation for self-harm in children. The study involved hypothesis driven examination of case files from 80 in patients admitted between 2003-8 to the Child and Family Therapy Unit (CFTU) at the Royal Children’s Hospital, Brisbane, Australia. Inpatients were selected, independent of the researchers, based on scores for HoNOSCA Item 3: ‘Non-accidental self-injury’. Forty inpatients (‘self-harm group’) had been scored on admission by inpatient staff as 2 (mild problem but definitely present), 3 (moderately severe problem) and 4 (severe to very severe problem). Forty inpatients (the ‘No self-harm comparison group’) had been scored 0 (No problem) or 1 (Minor problem requiring no action). Most common methods were ‘cutting’ and ‘head-banging’. The self-harm group differed from the comparison group in terms of family-related factors such as living situation, and psychological functioning as measured by the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ), total HoNOSCA scores, and a history of sexual abuse. Our hypothesis that children engage in self-harm to regulate their emotions was not supported. Explanations for the findings and implications for research, intervention and prevention are discussed.
elf-harm, Non-suicidal self-injury, NSSI, Child, Inpatient, Suicidal Behavior,Thyroid Test,Children Behavior,Child Abuse, Children Behavior, Child Mental Health, Child Psychology, Counselling, Neuroscience, Parental Care, Societal Influence, Adult Sexual Behavior, Risky Behavior, Child Health, Behaviuor, Anger Management, Child Anxiety, Autism, Adult Psychology, Obeys Children, Depression Disorders, Adolescent Anxiety, Children Development, Adult ADHD, Adult Still's disease, Anxiety, Childhood Arthritis, Childhood asthma, Depression, Social anxiety disorder, Self-harm, Non-suicidal self-injury, NSSI, Child, Inpatient