Self Harm Treatment

Orange County Mental Health Treatment

self harm treatment
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Sometimes, people use self harm to cope with stress and other mental health issues. Around five percent of people at any given time practice self-harm. While a person who practices self-harm tries to hide this behavior from the people they love, a parent or loved one might notice the signs. 

Each year, more than 300,000 people go to the emergency room to treat self-harm injuries. To discover a friend or family member practices self-harm can be scary and overwhelming. However, some more information and basic facts can help a family member or loved one help the person practicing self-harm.

Self-harm is a serious issue that affects many individuals. It is essential to recognize the symptoms and identify those who may be engaging in self-harm behaviors. First Light Recovery offers various treatment options designed to address this specific issue and provide individuals with the help they need to heal.

What is Self Harm?

Self-harm is the practice of a person hurting themselves when they can’t cope with the feelings, memories, or stress they have in their life. In many cases, the person cuts themselves in places that are readily visible. Other people might punch walls or practice different types of self-harm. These people need self-harm treatment to learn new coping methods to avoid self-harm in the future.

Why Do People Self Harm?

Many people who practice self-harm do so as a coping mechanism. It might be they can’t deal with the stress in their life, or they can’t adequately express the emotions that they feel. Sometimes, a traumatic event has occurred in the person’s past, and thinking about or reliving the moment leads the person to self-harm.  Therapy for self-harm is usually the only way to overcome it.

What Are the Signs of Self Harm?

Recognizing the symptoms of self-harm is crucial for early intervention and appropriate treatment. Some common signs include frequent cuts or burns on the body, wearing long sleeves or pants even in warm weather to hide scars, isolation from friends and family, and low self-esteem or feelings of worthlessness. These behaviors can indicate that an individual is struggling with self-harm and in need of professional help.

Self-harm, also known as self-injury or self-mutilation, is a complex and often misunderstood behavior. It is important to understand that self-harm is not a cry for attention or a sign of weakness but rather a coping mechanism used by individuals to deal with overwhelming emotional pain. While the physical act of self-harm may provide temporary relief, it is not a healthy or effective long-term solution.

It isn’t always easy to recognize the signs of self-harm, but it’s essential to know signs of self harming behavior. These self harm signs include:

  • Frequent injuries with unrealistic explanations
  • Wears long sleeves and pants when it’s hot outside
  • Numerous trips to the emergency room with minor injuries
  • Low self-esteem
  • Obvious issues in expressing their emotions

If someone worries that they’re struggling with self-harm, they must seek treatment. A loved one or family member might notice some of these signs and want to help. Treatment can be effective.

How to Identify Self-Harm

Identifying self-harm in yourself or someone you care about can be challenging. However, it’s important to be observant and educated about the signs. Look for unexplained injuries, such as cuts or burns. These injuries may be in discreet areas of the body, such as the inner thighs, wrists, or abdomen, where they can be easily hidden. It’s important to note that self-harm is not always visible, as some individuals may engage in behaviors such as hair pulling or scratching that leave no physical marks.

Monitoring changes in behavior is another crucial aspect of identifying self-harm. Pay attention to any signs of social withdrawal, where the individual may isolate themselves from friends and family. Sudden mood swings can also be indicative of self-harm, as the emotional turmoil experienced by individuals struggling with self-harm can lead to drastic shifts in their mood. Additionally, signs of depression and anxiety, such as a loss of interest in activities once enjoyed or excessive worrying, may be present.

If you suspect self-harm, it is essential to approach the individual with care and concern. Creating a safe and non-judgmental environment where they feel comfortable opening up is important. Encourage them to express their feelings and thoughts, and let them know that you are there to support them. Remember, it is crucial to avoid making any assumptions or accusations, as this may cause the person to become defensive or withdraw further.

Once you have established a trusting relationship, it is important to discuss the possibility of seeking professional help. 

Remember, identifying self-harm is just the first step. It is essential to provide ongoing support and understanding to the individual throughout their recovery process. By being knowledgeable about the signs, approaching the situation with empathy, and connecting them with appropriate resources like First Light Recovery can play a vital role in helping someone overcome self-harm and lead a healthier, happier life.

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Mental Illness Related to Self-Harm

Self-harm is a deeply complex and multifaceted issue that affects many individuals around the world. It is often intertwined with various mental illnesses, creating a challenging and delicate situation for those who struggle with both. At First Light Recovery, we recognize the intricate relationship between self-harm and mental health, and our dedicated clinical team is committed to providing comprehensive and compassionate care.

Depression, a common mental illness, frequently coexists with self-harm behaviors. The overwhelming feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and despair can drive individuals to engage in self-injury as a way to cope with their emotional pain. At First Light Recovery, we understand the debilitating impact of depression and offer evidence-based therapies and interventions to address its underlying causes. Are you depressed? Take our depression self test here.

Anxiety disorders, another prevalent mental health condition, often accompany self-harm. The constant worry, fear, and panic attacks experienced by individuals with anxiety can be overwhelming and lead to self-injurious behaviors as a means of seeking temporary relief. Self-harm OCD is also prevalent in individuals that have struggled with self harm in the past and fear relapsing. Our clinical team at First Light Recovery specializes in treating anxiety disorders, utilizing a variety of therapeutic approaches to help individuals manage their anxiety more effectively.

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is yet another mental illness frequently associated with self-harm. Individuals with BPD often struggle with intense emotions, unstable relationships, and a distorted sense of self. Self-injury can serve as a way to regulate these overwhelming emotions or to communicate their inner turmoil. At First Light Recovery, we provide specialized treatment for BPD, incorporating dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) and other evidence-based modalities to help individuals develop healthier coping mechanisms.

Eating disorders, such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder, are also commonly linked to self-harm. These disorders involve a complex interplay of distorted body image, low self-esteem, and an unhealthy relationship with food. Self-injury may be used as a way to punish oneself for perceived failures related to body weight, shape, or eating habits. First Light Recovery offers comprehensive treatment for eating disorders, including nutritional counseling, individual therapy, and group support to address the underlying psychological factors contributing to self-harm.

At First Light Recovery, our treatment approach is tailored to address the unique needs of individuals struggling with self-harm and mental illness. We believe in a holistic approach that encompasses evidence-based therapies, medication management when necessary, and a supportive environment where individuals can heal and grow. Our compassionate and experienced clinical team is dedicated to helping individuals develop healthier coping mechanisms, build resilience, and ultimately find hope and recovery.

Types of Treatment for Self Harm

Therapy for self-harm can take many forms, and the therapist works with the patient to find the right individual approach. In some cases, self-harm treatment can involve more than one type of therapy. It may take a combination of self-harm treatments to help the patient recover and develop new coping skills.

First Light Recovery offers various evidence-based treatments to address self-harm behaviors. These treatments include cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) to identify and modify negative thought patterns, dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) to develop healthy coping strategies and emotional regulation skills, and trauma-informed therapies to address underlying trauma that may contribute to self-harm. Additionally, individual counseling, support groups, and aftercare planning are integral components of the treatment approach at First Light Recovery.

If you or someone you know is struggling with self-harm, it’s important to seek professional help. First Light Recovery provides compassionate and comprehensive treatment programs to guide individuals toward a healthier and happier life. With the right support, healing is possible, and a brighter future awaits.


In some cases, the patient struggling with self-harm has a co-occurring mental health disorder, and the patient needs medication to control it. Some therapists might prescribe medication to help minimize the person’s anxiety. Medication is almost always a temporary measure, and the therapist will recommend ending the medication when the patient learns the coping skills needed to deal with the person’s desire to self-harm.

Individual Therapy

When a person has past traumatic events or has trouble expressing their emotions, working one-on-one with a therapist gives them the skills to examine the past or build new ways of dealing with emotions other than self-harm. Individual therapy is almost always used as a self-harm treatment, and the therapist may recommend different types of therapy to bolster the patient’s efforts.

Group Therapy

The therapist might recommend that the patient attend group therapy as part of their self-harm treatment. The group consists of other people struggling with mental health disorders and some with self-harm. Group therapy for self-harm can help the person see that they aren’t alone and learn the stories of others. Group therapy can also offer new insights and ways of coping with their emotions or past traumas.

Family Therapy

If the person dealing with self-harm has close ties with their family or still lives at home, it might be necessary that the entire family come into the office for therapy. This type of self-harm treatment can teach parents and other loved ones ways in which they can help the person struggling with self-harm overcome it. Family therapy can set the patient up for success..

How to Help a Loved One Who Self Harms

It can hard for a person who has a child or loved one who self-harms to know what to do and what actions to take. There are things that a loved one can do to help the person struggling with self-harm. Most steps a loved one can take include providing emotional support to the person struggling with self-harm and helping them take the first steps to receive therapy for self-harm.

Learn More About Self Harm

The first step a loved one should do is to learn more about self-harm. The idea might feel foreign for a loved one, and they might have a hard time processing the fact that their loved one self-harms. It can help them to learn more about why the person self-harms and that they aren’t the only one. 

It is essential to educate oneself about mental health conditions. A Mental health professional can help loved ones understand self-injury. Understanding the basics of self harm and mental health can help a person determine if treatment is necessary.

Offer Care and Compassion

Once the loved one understands the basics of self-harm, they must broach the subject with the person struggling with self-harm to help them get the treatment they need to recover. This requires care and compassion because the person might not want to admit that they have a problem.

Provide Unconditional Love

Many people who self-harm also struggle with self-esteem issues and might believe they aren’t worthy of love. A family member or loved one needs to provide this person with unconditional love. This means telling the person they’re loved and showing it as well.

Suicide Hotline

For immediate assistance or if you believe someone is in immediate danger of harming themselves, please contact your local emergency services or a suicide hotline. These helplines offer confidential support and guidance to individuals who are struggling with thoughts of self-harm or suicide. They can provide the necessary interventions to ensure safety and connect individuals to appropriate treatment at First Light Recovery.

When it comes to mental health, seeking help is crucial. It is important to remember that you are not alone in your struggles, and some people are ready to support you. Suicide hotlines are available 24/7, providing a lifeline for individuals in crisis. These helplines are staffed by trained professionals who are compassionate and understanding, ready to listen without judgment.

Remember, seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness. If you or someone you know is struggling with thoughts of self-harm or suicide, don’t hesitate to reach out to a suicide hotline. They are there to listen, support, and guide you through difficult times, ensuring that you receive the help you need.

Self-Harm Treatment in Orange County at First Light Recovery

When someone is struggling with self-harm issues, it’s essential that they seek therapy. A Self harm treatment center is the best way for the person to learn new coping skills and stop hurting themselves. However, it’s essential that the person find therapy for self-harm through the right program. 

First Light Recovery, located in the heart of Orange County, California, stands as a beacon of hope for those battling mental illness and substance abuse. As a premier residential mental health treatment center, it exemplifies the pinnacle of healthcare services dedicated to behavioral health. With a deep-rooted commitment to transforming lives, First Light Recovery provides an unparalleled sanctuary for individuals seeking a brighter tomorrow.

Our residential center is more than just a place – it’s a haven for new beginnings. As a leading recovery center, we specialize in providing comprehensive recovery services tailored to meet the unique needs of those grappling with substance use disorders. 

Our treatment facility boasts state-of-the-art amenities and a myriad of treatment options that prioritize holistic well-being, making us the go-to destination for individuals committed to reclaiming their lives.

At First Light Recovery, we have self-harm treatment programs that can help a person recover and build the coping tools they need. Each team member offers compassion and understanding to our patients and invests in their recovery. Contact us today to learn more!

Dr. Randall Turner First Light Recovery

Dr. Randall Turner received his medical degree from TUNCOM in Nevada and completed his Psychiatry Residency training at Loma Linda University. He’s board-certified in Psychiatry and also in Addiction Medicine by the American Board of Preventive Medicine.

He and his practice provide services to hospitals and institutions all over California. He has extensive experience with varied populations, including in geriatric psychiatry and addiction medicine. Every day, he strives to thoroughly understand human psychology and psychopathology with the hope of relieving suffering and fostering the growth of those he treats.