Experiencing self-injury

When someone harms themselves on purpose, through cutting, hitting, burning or other deliberate acts, the behavior is called self-injury. More common in teens and young adults, self-injury can be managed with treatment — which often involves finding healthier coping strategies to address painful or hard-to-express feelings.


Since self-injury can cause serious long-term harm, it’s important to seek professional help to explore treatment options. Coping mechanisms like journaling can complement a treatment plan and help lean into the painful feelings connected to the behaviors.

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Self-injury often involves secrecy and shame, so finding the courage to speak up and talk about difficult thoughts, feelings and behaviors is an important first step. Here are some resources to help you better understand recovery strategies.


Mental health professionals are trained to support people who are struggling with self-injury or other mental health challenges. If you need immediate help, please reach out to the resources below to talk to a trained counselor 24/7.

When contacting a resource below, any information you provide will be collected and used by that resource, subject to its end user terms and conditions and privacy policy. Please contact the applicable resource if you would like more information.
Resource Type Contact
Crisis Text Line Text Line Text ACTION to 741-741
Lifeline Call Line 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
Trans Lifeline Call Line 877-565-8860
The Trevor Project Website Visit website
ADAA Therapist Search Website Visit website
BetterHelp Website Visit website
Talkspace Website Visit website