Women are twice as likely as men to self-harm

And a fifth of young adults have self-harmed

Rachel Hosie@rachel_hosie
Thursday 01 November 2018 09:14

One in five young people in the UK have self-harmed, with women more likely to do so than men, according to new statistics.

The YouGov poll of more than 2,000 British adults revealed that 21 per cent of 18-34-year-olds have personal experience of self-harm, compared to 10 per cent of 35-54-year-olds.

Only a third of young people say they don’t know anyone with experience of self-harm.

The research also found notable differences between the experiences of men and women, with more women (13 per cent) saying they have experience of self-harm than men (six per cent).

Researchers also looked into alcohol and drug problems, mental health and eating disorders.

They found that 45 per cent of people say they have personal experience of anxiety or depression, 10 per cent have experienced an alcohol problem, eight per cent have had an eating disorder and four per cent have experience of an illegal drug problem.

Again there is a gender split: the reports suggest women (13 per cent) are more likely than men (three per cent) to have suffered an eating disorder, but men (14 per cent) are more likely than women (seven per cent) to have experience of an alcohol problem.

The survey was carried out by Addaction, a charity that works with people who have mental illnesses and drug or alcohol problems.

The online survey was carried out between September 28 and October 1 of this year.

The figures were weighted to ensure the sample was representative of the UK population as a whole.

Mike Dixon, CEO of Addaction said: “Although they can be hard to talk about, these are everyday issues affecting tens of millions of people in the UK.

“We know that people are struggling and as a society we need to be bolder in how we respond. If you’re struggling, you’re not alone. Reach out for help.”

If you have been affected by any of the issues mentioned in this article, you can contact the following organisations for support:



NHS Moodzone



Self-injury support

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