Contagion of NSSI

 

Some people are concerned that discussing NSSI in a group setting (for example in a school), or viewing NSSI content in films, on TV or the internet might increase the risk of engaging in NSSI. However, while self-injury has been featured in many popular movies and music, and is increasingly more common on the Internet, the extent to which exposure to NSSI may increase the incidence of self-injury is unclear.

 

Many people who self-injure report getting the idea to self-injure from a friend or someone they know who has self-injured. Others report learning about NSSI through television, movies, and the Internet. Others are not sure where the initial idea came from. Half of all adolescents who self-injure report talking to peers and friends about the behaviour.

 

For some people seeing signs of NSSI can act as a trigger that increases the urge to self-injure. For this reason, experts advise that wounds resulting from NSSI not be openly displayed in public (eg at school).