Where to Get Help

24x7 Crisis Help Line Call 1-800-273-8255

It is normal to have increased feelings of loneliness, sadness, fear, or anxiety. That is especially true during the COVID-19 pandemic which has brought about some new challenges in managing one’s mental health. If your thoughts turn to suicide, or you worried about a loved one’s thoughts, please treat it like any other medical emergency. Get help fast. If you are not in life-threatening danger, please contact us to schedule an appointment.”

According to the Center for Disease Control, suicide is one of the top ten leading causes of death in the United States. Suicide rates are higher in rural America than in urban America. The gap in suicide rates between rural and urban areas grew steadily from 1999 to 2015. Since 2007, the gap began widening more quickly. Suicide is preventable with multiple, comprehensive suicide prevention strategies that may include innovative ways to increase access to healthcare and mental healthcare in rural counties. Cdc.gov/ruralhealth

Like any other health crisis, it is important to address a mental health emergency quickly and effectively. With mental health conditions, crises can be difficult to predict because often there are no warning signs. Crises can occur even when treatment plans have been followed and mental health professionals are involved. Unfortunately, unpredictability is the nature of the mental illness. Use any of these numbers to get safe reliable help 24/7.

Call 911
Police officers, EMTs, and County mental health workers provide 24/7 support when individuals are feeling unsafe. Getting help in the first thirty minutes of a mental health crisis can help save a life.

Sonoma County Crisis Stabilization Unit (CSU)
707-576-8181
Provides 24/7 crisis assessment, intervention, and up to 23 hours of supportive care for children, youth and adults in acute mental crisis.

North Bay Suicide Prevention Hotline
855-587-6873
Provides 24/7 confidential resources for individuals experiencing depression or suicidal thoughts.

Crisis Text Line
Text with trained crisis counselor 24/7
741741

Buckelew Programs
415-499-1100
Provides 24/7 confidential crisis support if you or a loved one are having thoughts of suicide.

Veterans Crisis Line
800-273-8255 and press 1

Lake and Mendocino Counties
855-587-6373

Marin County
415-499-1100

If you need non-crisis supports because you, or someone you love, is experiencing emotional distress during the COVID-19 pandemic, there are several warmlines you can call to get help. Warmlines provide private and free resources to assist with questions related to mental illness, domestic violence, housing, or legal matters.

County of Sonoma Warmline
7 days a week, 10 am to 7 pm
707-565-2652

NAMI Warmline
Non-crisis line providing support and referrals
Text or call 866-960-6264

Institute on Aging
24-hour free Friendship Line for those 60 and older
855-639-7965

YWCA Domestic Violence Hotline
24/7 response line
707-546-1234

Verity Domestic Violence Hotline
24/7 response line
707-545-7273

Mental Health Association of San Francisco
California peer-run warmline 24/7
855-845-7415

Russian River Empowerment Center
Warmline Mon-Thurs 9:30-3:30
707-823-1640, x207, then press 0

Housing Hotline
Rental housing and eviction issues
707-843-4432

Legal Aid of Sonoma County
Hotline
707-542-1290

Mental Health Crisis

It is important to know that warning signs are not always present when a mental health crisis is developing. Common behaviors that may be a clue that a mental health crisis is developing:

  • Inability to perform daily tasks (like bathing, brushing teeth, brushing hair, changing clothes)
  • Rapid mood swings, increased energy level, inability to stay still, pacing.
  • Suddenly depressed, withdrawn; suddenly happy or calm after period of depression
  • Increased agitation, verbal threats, violent, out-of-control behavior, destroys property
  • Abusive behavior to self and others, including substance use or self-harm (cutting)
  • Isolation from school, work, family, friends
  • Loses touch with reality (psychosis) – unable to recognize family or friends, confused, strange ideas, thinks they are someone they are not, doesn’t understand what people are saying, hears voices, sees things that aren’t there
  • Paranoia

It is important to be aware of how long the changes in personality or daily functioning have been occurring and how much difficulty they are causing. This level of detail can be important for the health care professional to know. NAMI mental health crisis warning signs

Risk of suicide is a major concern for people with mental health conditions and those who love them. Encouraging someone to get help is a first step towards safety. People who attempt suicide typically feel overwhelming emotional pain, frustration, loneliness, hopelessness, powerlessness, worthlessness, shame, guilt, rage and/or self-hatred.

The social isolation so common in the lives of those with mental illness can reinforce the belief that no one cares if they live or die. Any talk of suicide should always be taken seriously. Most people who attempt suicide have given some warning—but this is not always the case. If someone has attempted suicide before, the risk is even greater. The isolation due to shelter-in-place orders for COVID-19 have increased thoughts of suicide even for those who do not have a mental health diagnosis.

Common warning signs of suicide include:

  • Giving away personal possessions
  • Talking as if they are saying goodbye or going away forever
  • Taking steps to tie up loose ends, like organizing personal papers or paying off debts
  • Making or changing a will
  • Stockpiling pills or obtaining a weapon
  • Preoccupation with death
  • Sudden cheerfulness or calm after a period of despondency
  • Dramatic changes in personality, mood and/or behavior
  • Increased drug or alcohol use
  • Saying things like “Nothing matters anymore,” “You’ll be better off without me,” or “Life isn’t worth living”
  • Withdrawal from friends, family, and normal activities
  • Failed romantic relationship
  • Sense of utter hopelessness and helplessness
  • History of suicide attempts or other self-harming behaviors
  • History of family/friend suicide or attempts

The important thing to remember is you do not have to do this alone. There are people available 24/7 who want to provide you with support and services. We are in this fight together.