There are a number of things you can do to stave off an immediate need to self-injure, these are the ones I know but if you know any more please do suggest them.
- Hold ice cubes. Ice cubes (fresh ones in any case) cause a burning sensation for a short time but do not damage the skin, and may prevent you hurting yourself if the pain is the reason you harm.
- Snap rubber bands. If you put an elastic band around your wrist (not too tight or you will cut off your blood supply) and pull bakc and release the band, it will hurt but not permanently harm you. Again, this is best for those for whom pain is a motivating factor.
- Draw on yourself. If the sight of blood is why you cut, then using a red felt-tip pen may for a time fool your mind and ease the desire to cut. Either draw lines with the pen wherever you cut, or if you cut words into your skin, draw those on yourself.
- Sport. If you find that the urge to harm, and the fight to resist it causes you to have a great deal of energy, then exercise may help. For one thing, it releases endorphins - as pain does - which makes you feel better, it occupies your body and in itself causes some pain through exertion while being good for you. If going to a sports centre or gym is impractical then running, situps, even dancing are things you can do easily in your own home.