Self-harm is when somebody intentionally damages or injures their body. Support is available for anyone who self-harms or thinks about self-harm, as well as their friends and family.
It’s important to know that support is available for anyone who self-harms or thinks about self-harm, as well as their friends and family.
It’s best to speak to a GP about self-harm, but you may also find it helpful to speak to a free listening service or support organisation.
If you need help now for a mental health crisis or emergency, read about where to get urgent help for mental health.
These services offer confidential advice from trained volunteers. You can talk about anything that’s troubling you, no matter how difficult:
Text “SHOUT” to 85258 to contact the Shout Crisis Text Line, or text “YM” if you’re under 19
If you prefer a webchat, these services are available at certain times:
Self Injury Support webchat (for women and girls) is open Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 7pm to 9.30pm
CALM webchat (for men) is open from 5pm to midnight every day
you’re harming yourself
you’re having thoughts about harming yourself
you’re worried about minor injuries, such as small cuts or burns – without treatment there is a risk of infection
Some people who self-harm are at a higher risk of suicide.
It’s important to get support or treatment as soon as possible to help with the underlying cause and prevent suicidal thoughts developing.
A GP will listen and discuss the best options for you, which could include self-help or support groups. They can also give you advice and treatment for minor injuries.
They may ask you detailed questions to help them understand the cause of your self-harm. It’s important to be honest with them, even if you do not know why you self-harm.
If needed, a GP may discuss referring you for an assessment with a local community mental health team (CMHT). An assessment will help your care team work out a treatment plan with you, such as a talking therapy, to help you manage your self-harm.
Read more about assessment and treatments for self-harm.
These organisations offer information and support for anyone who self-harms or thinks about self-harm, or their friends and family:
Self-injury Support (for women and girls)
CALM (for men)
If you struggle with suicidal thoughts or are supporting someone else, the Staying Safe website provides information on how to make a safety plan. It includes video tutorials and online templates to guide you through the process.