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News

Why do people with learning difficulties self-harm?

University Of Bristol : 31 March, 2007  (Technical Article)
A research project that will look at why people with learning difficulties self-harm has been awarded over
People with learning difficulties face a significant range of social disadvantages, barriers and exclusion that prevents them from participating fully in their communities. In particular, people with learning difficulties who self-harm are likely to face a more extreme degree of social exclusion.

The research aims to understand the experiences of people with learning difficulties, and those who support them. The study will highlight how to better support individuals who self-harm by:

exploring the experiences of men and women with learning difficulties where self-harm is an issue;
finding out from people that support them (both professionals and family members) their understandings of why the person might self-harm and what they think are the needs of people with learning difficulties who self-harm;
identifying the barriers and needs that must be addressed so that people with learning difficulties have the right, positive support to tackle their self-harm.
Dr Pauline Heslop, lead researcher for the project and Research Fellow at the Norah Fry Research Centre, said: A first-hand understanding of why people with learning difficulties might self-ham is vital so that appropriate responses and management of incidents of self-ham can be made.

Were delighted to work with the Bristol Crisis Service for Women on this project. This will be the first time a study has actually asked people with learning difficulties about their own understandings of their self-harm and what would help them.

Hilary Lindsay, Co-ordinator of Bristol Crisis Service for Women, added: We are delighted that this piece of work is being funded. The project will enable people with learning difficulties who self-harm to get the support that they need and have accessible information about the issues surrounding self-harm.
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