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Nurses supplying clean blades to self harmers?


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I think this is probably a good idea- when I was cutting I was using whatever I could get my hands on and I didn't have any real idea how much damage I could do.

Having someone there to make sure I wasn't going to give myself tetanus or some other nasty infection, and to direct me to places where I was unlikely to hit an artery would have really helped.  Because I didn't want the long healing time or the risk of dying... I just wanted the immediate "rush" that relieved my emotional pain.  So I think there's a lot of space for harm minimisation here.

Opening up to a nurse about exactly what you do and where could be a healing step... I personally felt so ashamed I didn't dare to tell anyone.  Having someone understand that this was something I *needed*, but who also encouraged me to look forward to a time when I didn't need it  would have helped a lot.  Although that would have to be an awesome nurse/ doctor.

Did that make any sense?

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I think this is probably a good idea- when I was cutting I was using whatever I could get my hands on and I didn't have any real idea how much damage I could do.

Having someone there to make sure I wasn't going to give myself tetanus or some other nasty infection, and to direct me to places where I was unlikely to hit an artery would have really helped.  Because I didn't want the long healing time or the risk of dying... I just wanted the immediate "rush" that relieved my emotional pain.  So I think there's a lot of space for harm minimisation here.

Opening up to a nurse about exactly what you do and where could be a healing step... I personally felt so ashamed I didn't dare to tell anyone.  Having someone understand that this was something I *needed*, but who also encouraged me to look forward to a time when I didn't need it  would have helped a lot.  Although that would have to be an awesome nurse/ doctor.

Did that make any sense?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

It sure did! One of the things that makes SI so difficult to treat is the lengths people go to to hide it. I think that among the various flavors of crazy, it is one of a couple that still really really carries bad stigma. Consequently, people who do it, face a lot of fear of predjudice and rejection when they start thinking about getting help... even from the medical staff who are given charge of treating them! Obviously, teaching people how to harm themselves better isn't an ideal stopping point in treatment, but demonstrating acceptance, understanding and appropriately placed concern is, in my opinion, a very big and good first step.

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i think this is a good idea too. in my city we have safe injection sites for drug addicts. they are provided with sterile equipment and a clean cubicle to inject in.

there was a news thing where a mother of two teenage boys, both addicts, was fighting for the ongoing existence of the safe sites because she knows that her boys are safe while they are there. if they overdose there is staff there to call for help.

we have to bring marginalised people into the mainstream.

grouse.

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While I agree with this, I also wish our health care system supported various adjunctive therapies that may help to diminish the urge to SI. About 18 years ago, I worked as an art therapist at a psych hospital. I worked with a couple women who SI'd severely and over many years. We developed techniques to channel these urges into their art. Their amount of SI diminished significantly.

However, around the same time, at least in the States, the insurance industry essentially did away with 3rd-party payments for adjunctive therapies (such as art, music, dance and movement therapies). Without ways to get reinbursed for their costs, many hospitals did away with what adjunctive therapies they'd previously offered. I'd imagine by now, it'd be most if not all hospitals have eliminated such therapies alltogether.

Many therapists in these fields did get additional degrees to be able to qualify for 3rd-party payments and be able to continue their work; however, that still didn't solve the issue of adjunctive therapies being offered in hospitals.

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Heya,

HIV/Hep C is a price noone should have to pay for SI or injection drug use.

Ever.

Harm reduction works, we think.

Noone deserves HIV or Hep C.

Clean needles/injection sites and clean blades are good public health measures.

And bring these problems into the light.

Contact with nurses can help people get treatment.

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Wow, I can't decide what I think about this. I'm all for giving sterilized needles to addicts. But for cutting... I honestly don't know.

I have a friend who cuts. She doesn't cut the way I do. She has to go to the hospital every single time. This happens maybe once a week. Giving her blades would make it so much easier for her to cut, cause at least now its a bit of a hassle for her to get access to razors and such.

But then again, harm reduction is always good.

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I think that giving them supplies would maybe tell them that hey, this is an issue just like drug abuse. Maybe putting it in that light would help them see it as an addiction of sorts and stop. EWWWWW. No blood ever drawn here, just overdoses and beatings. They can't stop that.

Helena- if she goes to the hospital weekly, they aren't treating her.  ;)

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