Choosing a therapeutic boarding school that helps teens who self-harm is a big responsibility for parents who just want the best care for their child. When parents discover that their teenager has been physically hurting themselves in a non-suicidal way, it is frightening and scary. Fortunately, once troubled teens get the professional help they need from therapeutic boarding schools, it can change their path from negative to positive. But what do parents need to know about choosing a therapeutic boarding school that helps teens who self-harm?
Why Do Teens Self-Harm?
When teens are struggling, sometimes they resort to behavior known as "self-harm." While self harm can manifest in different ways, it quickly becomes a way for teens to self-soothe. Whenever they face a challenge, stress, worry or anxiety, they resort to self harm. It can be a dangerous and negative downward spiral that requires professional help to overcome.
Here are some of the issues that might cause teens to self-harm:
- Emotional, physical or sexual abuse
- Substance abuse
- Victim of bullying
- Mental illness
- Adoption and abandonment issues
Remember that self -harm is the behavior that is an attempt to overcome an emotional challenge. Teens who are in pain emotionally somehow find relief in physical pain.
What is Self-Harm?
When a teen deliberately and repeatedly hurts themselves without intending suicide, that's considered self-harm. Emotionally hurt, depressed, or out of control teens often resort to self-harm because it releases pressure, calms their emotions and gives them a sense of control over something. Basically, it is an extremely unhealthy coping mechanism that creates more problems than it solves for troubled teens. There is no single type of teen who self-harms, and they can come from every race, ethnicity, sex and class.
There are several things that teens do to self-harm:
- Tearing skin
- Pulling hair
No matter how well a troubled teen hides the fact that he or she is self-harming, the troubles that are driving the behavior won't go away until the teen is able to get into therapy and deal with the underlying issues. Therapeutic boarding schools can be an incredible help to self-harming teens, no matter what their individual challenges are.
How Can Therapeutic Boarding Schools Help?
Therapeutic boarding schools are the perfect place for troubled teens who self-harm to get help. They are removed from their current environment and any negative influences and put into a neutral setting where they are safe and secure.
Troubled teen receive group and individual counseling, and participate in a number of activities designed to boost self esteem, make friends, learn responsibility and deal with challenges in a healthy way. Therapeutic boarding schools focus on healing and academics, so that the teen can transition to adulthood happy and healthy.
How Can Parents Choose the Best School?
The most important thing that parents can do when choosing a therapeutic boarding school for teens who self-harm is to verify that the school has success in treating other teens with the same conditions. Therapists at the school should have experience specifically with adolescents who self-harm and the school should be able to put parents in touch with other successful graduates of the program.
Not all teens are alike, nor are their issues, so among other things, parents should make sure the school is a good fit for their teen with regards to size, location, activities and more. The positive healing environment of a therapeutic boarding school is the best place for teens who self-harm to learn new coping skills from trained therapists who can guide them toward healing. When parents choose to enroll their troubled teen who self-harms into a therapeutic boarding school, they are doing what is best for their suffering child.