Researchers at Oxford and Stirling Universities recently compiled a study in which they asked school children with a history of self harm how they first heard about it. The majority reported learning about it after seeing or reading something online or hearing about it from friends.
The Royal College of Psychiatrists has expressed concern about the number of websites which seem to glamourise the issue with images of cuts and scars and is now calling for website moderators to remove images which could act as a trigger to self harm. They have also suggested that these sites link directly to other pages where professional support is available.
YouTube has recently experienced a surge of videos on the topic of self harm. Some are genuinely trying to offer support and advice, but others simply glamorise the problem with gory images which are accompanied by often solemn music and personal comments.
YouTube, which is owned by Google has said they will remove any images, videos, comments etc which deliberately encourage self harm.
“Our policies try to strike the right balance between enabling people to talk honestly about the issues they have faced, but prohibiting videos that actively encourage dangerous acts,” said a spokesman.
If you would like to find out more about self harm then please visit Mind. If you would like to talk to a counsellor about your experiences then please visit the homepage of this site where you can contact a qualified professional in your local area.