How common is NSSI?
There are many myths about NSSI, including that only teenage girls self-injure. The Australian National Epidemiological Study of Self-Injury (ANESSI), the world’s largest study of NSSI, found that 9.4% of children (10-17 years), 19.3% of young adults (18-24 years), and 28.1% of adults (25-100 years) have self-injured at least once.
More recent studies suggest 18% of adolescents and 13% of young adults self-injure at least once in their lifetime - rates that have remained relatively stable over the last 5-10 years.
People can self-injure at any age, but most people usually start to self-injure between the ages of 12 and 14 years. Some people will only self-injure once, while others will continue to self-injure for a number of years.
NSSI is equally common among males and females, however males and females typically use different methods to injure themselves.
To access the Australian National Epidemiological Study of Self-Injury, led by our colleagues at the University of Queensland, please click here.