Dealing with mental illness is a long and arduous journey. We now know that letting your emotions pile up inside you is detrimental to your long-term mental and physical health. Leaning on social support systems and discussing your issues with the right people can save your health from deteriorating. But talking about your struggles with your friends and family is understandably challenging. That is where a mental health helpline, such as an anxiety or OCD helpline, can help you.
Let’s discuss what helplines are and why more people should start using these services.
What are Helplines?
Helplines are services you can reach out to in case of mental or physical health crises or general comfort and support. Most helplines are on phone calls, but others can be online, such as live chats, forums, support groups, and emails. The person on the other end of the helpline is a volunteer or employee who is professionally trained to listen to you and guide you without being judgmental. Most helplines offer free services. You have nothing to lose by calling them and asking for clarity and guidance.
You can call a helpline to increase your awareness of mental health problems. You could ask for general information about illnesses such as depression or anxiety to better educate yourself on the subject. Perhaps you are suffering from some telltale signs of mental illness and would like to know why you feel the way you are and whether you need help.
Information About Treatment
If you have been diagnosed with a mental illness and don’t know what step to take next, it makes sense to call a mental health helpline. The counselor will guide you about the potential treatment options and given contacts for relevant support groups, therapists, or social services in your vicinity. Other times just talking about your struggles with a trained professional can be enough to make you feel better.
Not only are helplines useful to those who have a mental illness, but they are also there to guide their loved ones. If a friend or a family member has a suspected or known mental health issue, you may find it challenging to help them despite your best efforts and intentions. Yet, they rely on you for emotional support. Helplines can guide you on how to approach such people and educate you about the common dos and don’ts of caring for someone with mental health challenges.
Help During Crises
Helplines can be the difference between life and death in emergencies, such as panic attacks, suicidal thoughts, or psychotic episodes. The counselors are equipped with techniques to navigate through and diffuse these situations before they get past the point of no return.
Limitations of Helplines
These helplines are vital in making mental healthcare accessible to many, but they also have limitations. While someone may let things off their chest once and feel better, others may not. Helplines are not a substitute for psychiatric rehabilitation and medical interventions. Remember that it is not a helpline counselor’s responsibility to fix your problems; they’re there to guide you about your options. After that, the onus is on you to seek the necessary help.
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