Feeling sad, anxious, lonely, or depressed can make you feel isolated. Maybe you think nobody understands or you’re afraid of telling those around you how you feel.
Reaching out for help may seem difficult. You may not know where to turn, or feel embarrassed about your suffering. Know that there’s nothing to be ashamed of. Getting help is the best possible thing to do. You can feel better. You deserve to be happy. Fortunately, many resources are available to connect people with help.
For those feeling suicidal or experiencing a crisis that requires immediate help, call the National Suicide Prevention hotline by dialing 1-800-273-TALK. The call will be routed to a trained counselor at the nearest crisis center. Callers may remain anonymous while getting the help they need.
The federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration also offers a helpline, available Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern time. The number is 877-726-4727, and callers can receive information about services and treatments available in their area.
2. Mental Health America
This nationwide non-profit runs 240 affiliates in 41 states and offers a variety of support services and referrals to connect people who need help with the services best suited to their situation. The website offers a search tool that enables visitors to find a nearby affiliate.
3. Call your doctor
Although many doctors, including primary care physicians, may not have studied mental illness specifically, they will be tapped into the resources available in your community. A doctor can recommend a skilled and compassionate therapist or offer a referral for a relevant support group or organization.
4. National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)
This non-profit organization offers affiliates in all 50 states, and can serve as a clearinghouse for other services and support systems. Visit the affiliate search page to find your local office.
NAMI also runs a hotline, reachable by calling 1-800-950-6264, Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time. Through the hotline, callers may receive general information about mental health issues or referrals to support organizations. Trained volunteers are also on hand to lend a compassionate ear.
What resources have you found helpful for receiving mental health treatment?
Image by Ed Yourdon via Flickr