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Beyond medicalization: Self-injuring acts revisited
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
2016 (English)In: Health, ISSN 1363-4593, E-ISSN 1461-7196, Vol. 20, no 4, 346-362 p.Article, review/survey (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

For too long, medical/psychiatric and psychological studies, with focus on emotional sensitivity, personality traits, and correlation with psychopathology, have dominated research on self-injuring acts. The phenomenon thus has been defined as a predominantly medical issue. However, a large body of community prevalence studies show self-injuring acts to be a common phenomenon in society, and most of those who self-injure are unknown in psychiatric or other clinical settings. This article describes and analyzes the medicalization of self-injuring acts and argues a need to move research on self-injuring acts out of the medical paradigm. There is a need to explicitly explore the impact of social, cultural, structural, and gendered factors surrounding and influencing self-injuring acts. A non-medical approach, beyond the limits of the medical perspective, would feed research forward and create a more nuanced view on this widespread social phenomenon.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 20, no 4, 346-362 p.
Keyword [en]
demedicalization, gender, medicalization, research context, self-injuring acts
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology Social Work
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-125595DOI: 10.1177/1363459316633280ISI: 000380140900002PubMedID: 26944632OAI: diva2:1018157
Available from: 2016-10-04 Created: 2016-09-13 Last updated: 2016-10-04Bibliographically approved

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Ekman, Inger
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