It is estimated that more than 800, 000 people in Germany are affected by self-injurious behavior (SVV), also called autoaggression. According to experts, the number of unreported cases is also high. Cracking is one of the possibilities of self-harm with self-injurious behavior in addition to ripping out of hair, head beating, burning, biting or needles. With razor blades, knives, broken pieces or scissors your own skin is scratched.
Self-injury: scratches as SVV
Empirical studies show that most people who scratch themselves as a type of self-harm are between the ages of 14 and 20 years old. Gaps is not gender specific, but more cases are known among girls than boys.
The triggers of autoaggression are many. Anger, grief, mental pain can lead to self-harm. However, autoaggression is also often seen as a concomitant of other mental illnesses: borderline syndrome, bulimia and anorexia, depression, trauma or even abuse.
A typical reaction from outsiders to sufferers who scribble is usually the question of how to do such a thing. It is also often assumed that scratching is not only a self-injury but also an attempt to commit suicide. Psychologists and experts point out that scratching is not necessarily about suicide. Rather, sufferers have an urgent need to reduce stress and get rid of built-up internal pressure. Many sufferers report that Ritzen actually makes it easier.
Feeling self by autoaggression
But even the urgent desire to feel oneself and to perceive one's own body, can hide behind the self-injurious behavior of cracks. According to testimonials, many of the autoaggressives feel an inner emptiness, their body is for them only a shell without any emotions. By scratching as a form of self-injury, they have the feeling to feel themselves again.
Another reason may be for the affected adolescent to divert a mental pain into bodily pain, also this is one possible form of pressure reduction. Often, a great anger and aggression on oneself plays a crucial role in self-injurious behavior. In cracking, internal anger is not projected onto other people or objects through aggression, but onto itself.
Basically, chinking pain is masked by physical pain. The fatal at the scratch: It can become a kind of addiction. The need to feel oneself, relieve stress or pressure can lead to a further and more intense need for scratching with each new self-injury.
Treat self-injurious behavior
Scoring is by no means a fad, but a serious disease. Self-injurious behavior (SVV) of any kind is dangerous for one's own health as well as for the psyche. Therapeutic measures such as behavioral therapy, trauma coping or psychoanalytic talk therapy are highly recommended for auto-aggression.
Help can be provided by counseling centers or psychotherapists, in case of emergency the outpatient department of a psychiatric or psychosomatic clinic should be visited. Because scratching can always pose a major threat to your health and may even lead to an affected person bleeding to death.
Anyone who suspects that they are scratching should not look the other way. It is important to build the relationship of trust in these situations. Although parents are often shocked at first by their child's behavior, a reproachful response to self-harm should be avoided. The sooner the therapy starts, the better the chances are to get the problem of autoaggression under control.
Cracks as a health hazard
Many adolescents, who regularly scratch themselves, hide possible dangers of the own health by the self-injury. Many side effects of scratching are even classified by the affected adolescents as "normal", such as circulatory problems. Deep cuts can leave noticeable scars on the skin. For this reason, the Autoaggressiven like to choose body scratches, which can be hidden by clothing to the outside. Arms, legs, shoulders, thighs, or abdomen are the body parts most commonly affected by scratches.
Depending on the cut can also be muscles or even larger blood vessels are injured, the latter can bring with it the risk of possible bleeding. Due to a lack of hygiene when cutting, such as soiled shards or a dirty knife, also germs can get into the wound, which in turn can lead to inflammation as a result of self-injury.