Mental Health Resources You Should Know About




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May is mental health awareness month. According to the National Institute for Mental Health, in 2014, about one in five Americans suffered from a mental health issue. As common as these issues are, people can still be hesitant to get help.


Left untreated, mental health problems can make life much harder. You might make poor decisions, pull away from friends and family, or even stop taking care of yourself. If nothing else, it just doesn’t feel good to suffer from these problems.


Even if you recognize that you have a problem and want to get help, you might not know where to look. Luckily, there are a lot of easily-accessible resources online and over the phone to help you get treatment. Here’s where you can get started.  


Suicide Prevention Lifeline

If you need immediate help, call 1-800-273-8255. The Suicide Prevention Lifeline is free, confidential, and available 24/7 to anyone struggling with suicidal thoughts, depression, or other emotional pain. The crisis counselors provide short-term support over the phone, and can connect you with local programs that may be able to help with a longer recovery plan. Their website also has resources for suicide prevention.


SAMHSA

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is a government agency focused on fighting the negative effects of substance abuse and mental illness. While they don’t treat patients directly, they have resources and information that can help you get the help you need. Their most useful resource is a treatment locator, which allows you to search for help in your area. You can also call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) if you prefer to speak over the phone.


MentalHealth.gov

MentalHealth.gov is a government program designed to bring issues of mental health out into the open. They have useful information for those who are suffering and those who want to provide support. Their overall message is hopeful, reminding us that most people with mental health problems can experience drastic improvements in their mood and outlook on life.  


ADAA

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) is another popular organization dedicated to treating mental illness. In addition to their therapist locator, their “Live and Thrive” section has screening tests, FAQs, and an online peer support group, as well as other useful tips for managing your anxiety and/or depression.   


211

This toll-free phone number allows you to find resources in your area. It’s mostly used for housing and utilities, but it may help with mental health resources as well.  


Even with these resources, it can be hard to find the motivation to get treated for mental illness, especially if one of your symptoms is hopelessness. But remember, mental health problems are common, and your life can improve from treatment. Most importantly, it’s OK to ask for help.

By Luke Smith



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