Having a mental breakdown, or watching someone have a mental breakdown is unparalleled. You need to learn what to expect in order to ease the situation in these difficult times.
So, you or someone you know is having a breakdown. Who can you call? – Whether you need advice, or just an ear to talk to there are several charities readily available. Firstly, Samaritans’ free helpline (116 123) is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Secondly, there is the Mind Infoline (0300 1233393), this service is only available 9-6 Monday to Friday, they provide a range of topics which you can talk about in depth. Thirdly, there is the CALM (0800 585858) help line, which is readily available especially for men from 5pm to midnight 7 days a week.
If you also need advice but the situation isn’t life threatening you can call the NHS on 111. Alternatively if you feel the situation is getting out of hand, and you or someone is turning into a threat please do call 999.
So how do you plan for a mental crisis? Well sadly, technically you can’t 100% plan. However, you can visit MIND which provides information on living and caring for someone with a mental health problem. You can also ask mental health care providers to help create a joint crisis plan. This plan covers everything from getting you to a safe location, getting family and friends notified and alerting work. In the worse case scenario, it allows you to choose which treatments you would like to refuse if you lose the capacity and ability to make your own choices.
In the worse case scenario again, it is advised to go to AnE if you feel that the situation may get out of hand, even as a precautionary measure. You do also have the option to be referred as a voluntary patient, however on this basis you are not guaranteed a bed as they may prioritise other individuals with serious injuries. When referring to hospitalisation, people often think of ‘sectioning’. Which is when someone is hospitalised in a special location. However, this is only done to protect your own health and those around you. It is a decision which has to be made my multiple professionals and it is not taken lightly.
Is it possible to receive this care at home? In some cases, local crisis teams are readily available and they can be considered before hospitalisation. They offer regular home visits to check upon your wellbeing and offer you self-help strategies.
Remember, if you need help please speak out! There are hundreds of people readily available to assist you.