Self-harm resources and reading

Here's our list of downloadable leaflets and books about self-harm. If you've got a self-harm resource to recommend, let us know in the comments below.

Boy reading a book about self-harm

Try these books for more information on self-harm.

Downloads about self-harm

Self injury Support

Read up on issues around self-injury on this website, using their ‘Resources’ tab.


Read up on issues relating to self-harm with a range of factsheets you can download, whether it’s for you, a friend or family member.


These factsheets provides a useful introduction to self-harm, treatment, and the relationship between self-harm and mental health issues.

Royal College of Psychiatrists

There’s lots of practical advice in the leaflet, Damage Limitation.

Scar Tissue

Check out these leaflets and posters.

Books about self-harm

Who’s hurting who?

A book based on interviews with 15 young people who talk about their experiences with the health services and why they decided to turn to self-harming in the first place.
Written by Helen Spandler (42nd Street)

Women and Self-harm

Looks at the reasons why women self-harm and the social, emotional and psychological reasons that lead to it. The book includes a wide range of resources and provides information about recovery and healing.
Written by Gerrilyn Smith, Dee Cox and Jacqui Saradjian (Women’s Press Ltd)

Secret Scars: Uncovering and Understanding the Addiction of Self-injury

What is self-injury? Why do people deliberately hurt themselves? Why can’t they stop? These are some of the questions that are looked at in this study.
Written by V.J. Turner (Hazelden Information & Educational Services)

Deliberate Self-Harm in Adolescence (Child & Adolescent Mental Health)

This book is mainly for professionals and parents of young people at risk of self-harming. It discusses the risk factors that lead to self-harm such as depression, substance abuse and antisocial behaviour.
Written by Claudine Fox and Keith Hawton (Jessica Kingsley Publishers)

When the Body Is the Target: Self-Harm, Pain, and Traumatic Attachments

Dr. Sharon K. Farber explains how addictive connections to pain and suffering develop into self-harm. It talks about the addiction surrounding the ritual of self-harm and how it can be treated.
Written by Sharon Klayman Farber (Jason Aronson)

Cutting: Understanding and Overcoming Self-Mutilation

Contains lots of information about self-harm including what it is, who does it, how it develops and how you can support someone.
Written by Steven Levenkron (W. W. Norton)

Self Harm: The Path to Recovery

What is self harm? How does it develop? What are the steps to recovery? How can I help someone who self-harms? This book draws on lots of statistics, case studies and research to demystify myths surrounding self-harm.
Written by Kate Middleton, Sara Garvie (Lion Publishing plc)

Healing the Hurt Within: Understand Self-injury and Self-harm, and Heal the Emotional Wounds

Help and guidance for family and friends about how to understand and respond to people who are self-harming.
Written by Jan Sutton (How To Books Ltd)

Next Steps

  • If you have questions about self-harm you can use selfharmUK's Ask a question service. Or look at the questions that have already been answered.
  • Share your thoughts and stories about self-harm by video, picture or words at selfharmUK.
  • is an online community where you can get peer support for self-harm and other mental health problems.
  • Chat about this subject on our Discussion Boards.
  • Need help but confused where to go locally? Download our StepFinder iPhone app to find local support services quickly.


MH resources


Updated on 29-Sep-2015

Picture of boy reading by Shutterstock.