Why People Hurt Themselves

Individuals who self-injure may feel that doing so helps release pent-up feelings of anxiety, anger, or sadness. But evidence finds that over time, those raw emotions—along with additional feelings of guilt and shame—will continue to be present, and may even worsen. In addition, self-harm can be dangerous in itself, even if the individual has no wish to cause themselves significant or long-lasting damage.

Drink to not think

People who experience trauma can often turn to alcohol and other substances to manage the intense flood of emotions and traumatic reminders. They may also use it to try to numb themselves. Drugs and alcohol may initially dull the effects of trauma and help manage associated distress, but a dangerous cycle may begin.