Depressive Symptoms among Self-Harming Adolescents
Self-harm is a common form of high-risk behaviour in adolescents. It is often linked to depression; however, the correlation between these two variables has scarcely been studied. The presented study on a sample of 1,117 adolescents aged from 11 to 19 (mean age 15.56) compares the occurrence of depressive symptoms (measured by the CDI questionnaire) in individuals who self-harm versus those who do not self-harm, it investigates whether there is a correlation between the intensity of self-harm (measured by a modified SHI questionnaire) and depressive symptoms on a sample of self-harming adolescents, as well as explores the specificities of the correlation in terms of the age and sex of the subjects. The results showed that the occurrence of depressive symptoms: 1/ is statistically significantly higher (p = 0.000) among self-harming individuals compared to non-self-harmers, particularly in female subjects, 2/ significantly correlates with the intensity of self-harming behaviour in the group of self-harmers (p = 0.000), and 3/ it decreases with age among self-harming female subjects. The conclusions point to a need for the clarification of the relationship between depressive symptoms and self-harming behaviour (presence and direction of causality) and to the consequences in clinical practice.
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