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Teen Self-Harm Linked to Problems as Adults

Jim Liebelt | Senior Writer, Editor and Researcher for the HomeWord Center for Youth and Family at Azusa Pacific University | Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Teen Self-Harm Linked to Problems as Adults

*The following is excerpted from an online article from the Sun News.

Teenagers who hurt themselves intentionally are at a higher risk of developing mental health and substance abuse problems later in life, a new British study has found.

Researchers at three British universities collected data from 4,799 adolescents who took part in the Children of the 90s population study. The researchers found 19% of 16-year-olds who took part in the study had a history of self-harming.

Five years after the initial study, the risk of developing depression and anxiety was higher among those who self-harmed than those who had not. As well, teens who self-harmed were more likely to smoke and misuse drugs or alcohol as adults.

Teens who self-harm but are not suicidal "should not be dismissed or viewed as trivial" as it could be an early warning sign for problems later in life, researchers said.

The study was published in the British Medical Journal.

Source: Sun News