Mental Health Hotline

doctor answers phone at mental health hotline Nearly 20%—or 43.8 million American adults—have experienced some form of mental illness in any given year, which can present itself in a wide variety of disorders, including anxiety, schizophrenia, substance abuse, eating, mood, and personality disorders.1 For about 9.8 million people—or 4% of the population—these disorders are so severe that they impair their ability to function in major life activities.1 Further, untreated mental illness increases the risk of homelessness, substance use disorders, legal issues, and suicide.1

While help is available for dealing with mental illnesses, unfortunately, it’s significantly underused. Yet early intervention is crucial since it can slow the progression of the disease and restore your ability to function normally.

Mental health hotlines are a good starting point for getting help for mental illness since hotline operators have access to a wealth of information and resources and provide support to people with mental illness or their loved ones.

The most important function of a mental health helpline is to connect you with treatment providers to reduce the impact a mental illness has on your functioning. All calls to a hotline are private and confidential, which can ease the discomfort about making the call for some people. When you reach a hotline, you’ll speak to thoroughly trained hotline employees and volunteers.

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What Questions Should I Ask?

It can be daunting to call a hotline for the first time, but operators have a lot of information to answer a wide variety of questions. Some questions you might want to ask include:

If you are calling a hotline on behalf of a loved one, your questions may focus on:

How Do I Know If I Should Call One?

man wonders if he should call a helpline

Calling a mental health helpline can serve a number of purposes, including:

General Mental Health Information

There are many reputable hotlines you can contact for answers to questions about mental health or mental illness, including:

Other Helplines

While there are many emergency mental health hotlines, if you or someone you care about is having thoughts of suicide, call 911 for immediate help.

Some of the reputable 24-hour mental health hotlines that can provide you with support, education, and resources include:


  1. National Alliance on Mental Illness. (n.d.). Mental Health by the Numbers.

Additional Resources

As advocates of mental health and wellness, we take great pride in educating our readers on the various online therapy providers available. PsychGuides has partnered with several thought leaders in the mental health and wellness space, so we can help you make informed decisions on your wellness journey. PsychGuides may receive marketing compensation from these companies should you choose to use their services.

PsychGuides may receive marketing compensation from the above-listed companies should you choose to use their services.

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