The Importance of Addressing a Loved
One’s Mental Health

No one knows them better than you. So when they start showing signs of mental health challenges—like depression, anxiety or substance use—or thoughts of suicide, reach out to link them to help. Starting the conversation may feel awkward, but you are the right person to do it. Keep reading to learn about mental health and family support.

19% or 45 million Americans have experienced a mental health challenge.

In 2020, that number increased by 1.5 million.

24% of adults with a mental illness report having an unmet need for treatment.

Nearly all families will have a member who will experience a mental health challenge in their lifetime.

Learn More About Mental Health

Ways to Show Mental Health Support for Family Members

Learn About Mental Health
Knowing more about a loved one’s mental health challenge can have many positive outcomes including reduction in symptoms, hospitalization days, and relapses.

Set Personal Boundaries and Practice Self-Care
While it’s important to offer support, it’s just as necessary to set limits and take care of yourself for the sake of everyone’s well-being.

Let Go of Shame or Guilt
It’s important to remember that you did not cause your loved one’s mental health challenge. It is equally important to remember you cannot “cure” your loved one.

Recognize Their Courage
Being open about mental health challenges takes a lot of bravery, especially when there is still so much stigma around mental health. Show your loved one you appreciate their willingness to be open, and be open about any of your own struggles.

Resources That Help

If a loved one is showing signs of mental health challenges, don’t wait to reach out. Encourage them to talk to a doctor, mental health professional, or call the Access and Crisis Line for support. You are not alone. Getting mental health help for a family member is available.

Use Our Resource Tool
The Access and Crisis Line at (888) 724-7240 provides support 24/7. Experienced counselors can answer questions about mental health and substance use, provide referrals, offer support and crisis intervention. In the case of a medical emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.
Suicide Prevention, Substances,
& Substance Use Disorders
There are many factors that can affect mental health. Get in-depth information and tips when it comes to suicide prevention, substances, and substance use disorders.
Mental Health America's 2021 State of Mental Health in America Report, Mental Health America 2021