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Self-harming on the increase among young men

Published onsdag 10 juli 2013 kl 11.06

Young men harming themselves is a growing phenomenon in Sweden. In the age group 15 to 24 years, there has been a 27 percent increase in a ten-year period, according to a new report.

Self-harming to a level where they need to be admitted to hospital, is now more common among young men than being the victims of violence, says the National Board of Health and Welfare.

Camilla Kortnejad Karlsson, a nurse and therapist in Stockholm working with young people, thinks self-harming behaviour in young men could be more difficult to see.

"I believe there is an idea that it is young women who harm themselves. So you don't think about asking the boys. I know many young women never get asked if they are harming themselves, and then one can imagine that young men get asked even more seldom," she tells Swedish Television SVT.

Although the behaviour is growing among boys, girls are still overrepresented. The number of young men who needed hospital care due to their self-harming behaviour was 120 per 100,000 inhabitants in 2011, while among young women the number was 275 per 100,00 inhabitants.

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