Number Of Children Hospitalised For Self-Harm At A Five-Year High

Rise In Self-Harm For Boys "Suffering In Silence"

15.12.2014

A new health and social care investigation has shown that the number of children being admitted to hospital for self-harming is at a five-year high.

Comparing results from 2009/10 and 2013/14, admission of girls aged between ten and 14 increased by almost 93%, while the rise was 45% in boys. 

Campaigners fear that figures suggest a worrying number of young boys "suffering in silence", and have urged teachers and parents to be more vigilant to the signs of self-harm. 

Speaking to the BBC, Project Director of selfharm.co.uk Rachel Welch explained that the media had a responsibility to present care evenly to both genders. 

She said: "Because of the way society has constructed the image of self-harm, it makes it much easier for girls to come forward and ask for help.

"We've actually got a huge number of boys who are unable to come forward and ask for help, because they're struggling with something perceived to be something that only affects girls."

Experts suggest that the increase in admissions was partly due to a rise in self-harming, as well as an improved system of data recording in hospitals. In response to reports, the government has announced that it will be investing £30m into mental health care in A&E units.

Expert Opinion
The findings of this report are extremely troubling as it indicates a rise in the number of young people being admitted to hospital after self-harming. It is vital more is done to identify youngsters who may be suffering with mental health issues and ensure they are offered the help and support they require.

“All too often we see examples of young people who are unable to access the services they require, which can have devastating consequences on the individual, as well as their family and friends.

“We hope that this report is taken into account and more is done to ensure all young people suffering with mental health issues are able to access the services they require.”
Mandy Luckman, Partner