The Straits Times
Published on Dec 05, 2012

After parent's cancer death, teens twice as likely to self-injure


(REUTERS) - Teens who have lost a parent to cancer are twice as likely as those who have not to cut or burn themselves, according to a new Swedish study.

About 20 per cent of those with one surviving parent said they hurt themselves compared with about 10 per cent of teens with both parents.

"We were very surprised to find that so many did it," said lead researcher Tove Grenklo, a behavioral scientist at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm.

Earlier research showed that children who lost a parent were more likely to have psychiatric problems, depression, drug and alcohol abuse and anxiety. Ms Grenklo and her colleagues wanted to see if they also were more likely to hurt themselves.