Bulgarian Journal of Psychiatry, 2023; 8(2):33-39


Petar Petrov

Medical University „P. Stoyanov“ – Varna, University Hospital „Sv. Marina“ – Varna

Abstract. Adolescence represents a vulnerable period of development, associated with significant and uncontrollable changes in the body shape and perception. Self-injurious behaviour amongst individuals suffering from eating disorders is a real and serious concern. The incidence of self-injurious behaviour in this population can vary from 25% to 50%. The incidence of eating disorders in self-injurious individuals is described to vary between 54% and 61%. There is a direct connection between non-suicidal self-injurious (NSSI) behaviours  and suicidal behaviour in children and adolescents with eating disorders. Socio-cultural factors and the media play a significant role in the formation and maintenance of both types of behaviours. Almost all studies on the topic are retrospective and are unable to fully assess the nature of connection between eating disorders and non-suicidal self-injury. The last few years we have seen an increase in the seeking of specialized care for children and adolescent with eating disorders, while the patient age is getting younger. This emphasises the need all aspects of these disorders to be recognized, including risk factors, comorbidity, suicidality, etc.

Key words: anorexia nervosa, non-suicidal self-injury, suicide

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