Self Harm in Children

News March 2022

Self Harm in Children

Self harm is when someone hurts themselves on purpose. There are many reasons why someone might self-harm.

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Deliberate self-harm is where an individual hurts or injuries themselves to release or cope with big emotions or to just distract themselves.

For children, the world can be a scary place which is filled with big feelings and worries that they might not understand or know how to cope with. In these times children and young people do whatever they can do to manage these emotions, this could be anger outbursts, withdrawing or even deliberate self-harming.

Below are some Do’s and Don’ts if you find out your child has been self harming:


– Try and manage your own emotions and your reaction
– Thank them for coming to you and reaching out for help
– Keep communication open and let them express themselves
– Reach out to support services, such as Kids Helpline, your GP, Centacare, headspace or a school counsellor
– Get angry at them or freak out
– Guilt, shame or make them feel bad about their actions
– Minimise them or their feelings
If you are concerned about your child or another young person, please contact Centacare on 1300 619 379 for support.
If you believe it to be a mental health crisis, please contact
Accessline on 1800 800 944.
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