Getting Help at the Time of a Mental Health Crisis

Getting Help at the Time of a Mental Health Crisis

We used to talk of a mental break down. Now we use the phrase mental health crisis. Either way we are referring to an emotional and/or psychological deterioration that affects one’s ability to function. It may come out as aggression, inactivity, extreme depression, suicidal behavior, out of control behavior.

The crisis is a frightening and at times dangerous experience. The fright and danger is not only for the person whose crisis leads to out of control behavior, but for those around the person either by the emotional impact, threat to safety or concern for the well-being of the affected person. Those around the person are frequently friends, but most often family. Family members may be parents, siblings or the intimate partner. Depending on the behavior of the affected person and the relationship and age of the people witnessing and experiencing the affected person, the situation may be overwhelming, disturbing and scary.

In such a situation, people are advised to reconsider intervening themselves. Very often people are emotionally charged and their response may inadvertently escalate a mental health crisis.

It is important to remember to stay calm yourself and call your local crisis health response service or police for assistance. The immediate goal is always the safety for those involved.

In the aftermath of a mental health crisis, there may be much to repair. This is where counseling is effective.

Counseling helps the persons involved discuss what lead up to the event and how to resolve those issues to mitigate the likelihood of a re-occurrence. Counseling is also aimed at repairing relationships and soothing nerves from what was likely a traumatic experience. In the end, counseling is about moving forward, finding those solutions or strategies to improve one’s situation to enable reasonable living.

While a great deal of attention is often focused on the person who suffered the mental health crisis, it typically involves the whole family. Better results are achieved when the whole family participates in the counseling process. Your counselor may orchestrate the approach best suited to you and your family to address the multitude of issues involved.

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