Professional Care as an Option Prior to Self-Harm A Qualitative Study Exploring Young People's Experiences
2015 (English)In: Crisis, ISSN 0227-5910, E-ISSN 2151-2396, Vol. 36, no 3, 179-186 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Background: Deliberate self-harm (DSH) is a growing problem among young people and is a major risk factor for suicide. Young adults experiencing mental distress and suicidal ideation are reluctant to seek help, requiring new strategies to reach this group. Aims: The present study explored young people's views of professional care before first contact for DSH, and factors that influenced the establishing of contact. Method: Interviews with 10 young individuals, shortly after they had harmed themselves, were analyzed using qualitative content analysis. Results: The participants emphasized the importance of receiving more knowledge on where to turn, having different help-seeking options, and receiving immediate help. Family and friends were vital for support and making health care contact. The quality of the professional contact was stressed. Several reasons for not communicating distress were mentioned. Two themes were identified: "A need for a more flexible, available and varied health care" and "A struggle to be independent and yet being in need of reliable support." Conclusion: These findings suggest that easy and direct access to professional help is a decisive factor for young people experiencing psychological problems and that health services must find new ways of communicating information on seeking mental health help.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Hogrefe Publishing , 2015. Vol. 36, no 3, 179-186 p.
young people's experiences, deliberate self-harm, qualitative, help-seeking
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-109393DOI: 10.1027/0227-5910/a000310ISI: 000360771700004PubMedID: 26088828OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-109393DiVA: diva2:857417