Feeling down or overwhelmed isn't confined to a specific season; mental health challenges can arise at any point. Sometimes it’s the winter and the end of the year and sometimes it can be in the midst of everyday life. The key is to recognize when you need help and to know that there are numerous resources and supportive communities ready to assist you. Seeking help and using these services is a courageous step toward taking care of your mental wellbeing, and it's a journey you don't have to make alone.
This blog post is a guide to various charities and support services dedicated to helping young people just like you. These organizations are committed to offering assistance and resources to those in need, regardless of the time of year. By familiarizing yourself with these resources and understanding how to access and use them, you can find the right support to navigate through challenging times.
Here are 9 of the organizations providing mental health support services for young people:
1. Samaritans: They offer emotional support to anyone feeling low, distressed, or struggling to cope. Their free and confidential helpline (116 123) is open 24/7 and can provide immediate assistance.
2. Shout: As the UK’s first 24/7 crisis text service, Shout helps those dealing with all forms of crisis including suicidal thoughts, abuse, self-harm, and bullying. Simply text ‘SHOUT’ to 85258 to initiate a conversation.
3. Childline: Tailored for people under 19, Childline offers free confidential counselling over the phone or online. Connect with a Childline counsellor at 0800 1111, or use their chat or email service through their website.
4. YoungMinds: Dedicated to empowering young people to overcome mental health challenges, YoungMinds offers various services, from urgent help to guides on specific conditions. They also run a parents’ helpline at 0808 802 5544 for any concerns about a child's wellbeing.
5. Papyrus: With a focus on preventing young suicide, Papyrus runs the HOPELINEUK at 0800 068 4141, where advisors offer practical advice for staying safe and suggest local resources.
6. Mind: Provides advice and support for anyone experiencing mental health problems. Reach out to their confidential Infoline at 0300 123 3393.
7. Beat: For those battling eating disorders, Beat offers helplines, message boards, and online support groups for under-18s and adults. Call them at 0808 801 0677.
8. The Mix: A free, confidential helpline (0808 808 4994) offering support and information for people under 25 on topics from mental health to money and homelessness.
9. Muslim Youth Helpline: A confidential helpline service for young Muslims in the UK. Connect at 0808 808 2008 to access culturally sensitive and non-judgmental counselling.
How to Use These Services:
Reach Out Early: Don't wait until you're in a crisis. If you're feeling down or anxious, reach out for support.
Find support that fits your needs: Keep an open mind towards support options. While individual therapy may work for some, others might find solace in group therapy, online forums, or text lines. It's important to find what fits best for you.
Confidentiality and Privacy: These services offer confidential help, so you can talk about your feelings without fear of judgment.
No Shame in Seeking Help: Remember, it's okay to ask for help. Seeking support is a sign of taking care of yourself.
Be Open and honest: When reaching out for help, be clear about what you’re feeling. There’s no right or wrong way to talk about mental health, but a good starting point might be to say that you’re finding things tough and explain why. Being open and honest will aid those assisting you to understand your needs better.
Utilize Online Resources: Many of these services also offer online resources, including forums, advice articles, and self-help tools.
Additional Tips for Managing Mental Health:
Stay Connected: Keep in touch with friends and family, even if it's just a text or a call.
Maintain a Routine: Try to maintain a regular schedule, including sleep patterns, meals, and some physical activity.
Practice Self-Care: Engage in activities that make you feel good, whether it's reading, listening to music, or spending time outdoors.
Be Mindful: Mindfulness and relaxation techniques can help manage stress and anxiety.
Remember, mental health is as important as physical health, and seeking help is not a sign of weakness but rather of strength. Be gentle with yourself. Even small steps towards wellbeing count. You matter, and support is always available.
Note: For more detailed information about each charity and the services they offer, please visit their respective websites. This guide is intended to be a starting point for finding support and understanding the options available.