Korean J Psychosom Med.  2021 Dec;29(2):128-135. 10.22722/KJPM.2021.29.2.128.

The Effects of COVID-19 on the Self-Harm in Children and Adolescents Observed in a University Hospital

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Konyang University Hospital, Daejeon, Korea
  • 2Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, Konyang University, Daejeon, Korea

Abstract


Objectives
:The aim of the present study is to investigate the impact of COVID-19 on the incidence and severity of childhood and adolescent self-harm.
Methods
:Medical records were retrospectively reviewed for patients under the age of 18 who visited the emergency room of Konyang University Hospital to compare the rate of self-harm attempts and the demographic, clinical, and self-harm-related of self-harm attempters aspects before and after the COVID-19 outbreak.
Results
:During 11 months after the COVID-19 outbreak, the proportion of the number of children and adolescents patients with self-harm and their episodes increased significantly compared to that during 11 months be-fore the COVID-19 outbreak (χ2 =14.397, p<0.001; χ2 =24.156, p<0.001). Between about the year before and after the outbreak of COVID-19, there was a significant difference in the prior self-harm history and psychiatric history among children and adolescents who visited the emergency room and the ratio of hospitalization to other departments than department of psychiatry (p<0.05; p<0.05; p<0.05).
Conclusions
:In the COVID-19 situation, the proportion of children and adolescents who visited the emergency room due to self-harm and admission to other departments are increasing. And it has been shown that the inci-dence of self-harm has significantly increased in children and adolescents with a history of prior self-harm and psychiatric past history. These findings underscore the need for the psychiatric evaluation and intervention of self-harm related high-risk groups among children and adolescents in pandemic situations.

Keyword

COVID-19; Self-harm; Children and adolescents
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