The stigma around mental health has decreased in the past few decades, much to the benefit of all of us. However, there are still some barriers that can hold people back from getting help when they need it. Whether you think you’re going to be able to cope on your own, that your issues aren’t that serious, or otherwise, take a look at the signs below that you might be in need of some help beyond what you’re capable of giving yourself.

You’re feeling depressed

Any of us can feel down, can feel temporarily upset, or can react to stressful and difficult circumstances with sadness. Depression can affect many of us and might have affected you before, even without you knowing. However, if you’re starting to experience consistent and persistent restlessness, and worthlessness, and you are finding no pleasure in life or the things that you enjoy, or even if you’re feeling tired all of the time, it might be a sign of clinical depression that demands treatment. Depression affects everyone differently, so you don’t have to tick every box to think that it’s worth getting yourself seen to. Taking care of one’s mental health is crucial, especially when feeling depressed; seeking more information about their depression therapy can empower individuals to make informed decisions and embark on a journey of healing and recovery.

You have too much stress

Similarly, like feelings of depression, we can all experience feelings of stress. Having a stressful response in a stressful situation can be healthy, in fact, and so long as you’re taking steps to manage that stress, be it with meditation, exercise, a healthy sleeping pattern, etc., it doesn’t have to be a major health concern. However, if you’re feeling that stress is starting to affect you even when you’re removed from stressful stimuli if it’s affecting your sleep, or if you’re starting to experience back pain or joint pain, it could be a sign of a chronic stress issue that needs to be addressed.

You’re having panic attacks

Panic attacks can feel very scary when you first take them. You can feel a sudden and heavy sense of dread, fear, sadness, and other intense emotions, alongside physical symptoms like hyperventilation, shaking, sweating, a fast heartbeat, and chest pain. It’s not uncommon for someone to think that they’re in serious danger when first experiencing a panic attack but it’s your fight or flight response kicking into overdrive. There are steps you can take to immediately calm your panic attacks, such as taking deep breaths, focusing your attention on objects surrounding you, or even getting up and moving around, if you feel you can. However, panic attacks are usually associated with anxiety disorders, so getting through them may not be enough. Medication and counseling can do a lot of the work with you.

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You’re using unhealthy coping mechanisms

Untreated mental health issues can lead to further and more complex problems down the line, chief of which are the unhealthy coping mechanisms we can use to deal with them. Self-harm is a considerable one, but one of the most common problems is substance abuse. What might strike you as a relatively harmless and controlled use of substances could, in fact, be self-medication. Even if not, you can develop a dependency on alcohol and drugs through habitual use, whatever the reason you’re using, and services like can help you stop. Addiction is amongst the hardest of mental health issues to face alone, and getting help can help you find all manner of tools to cope with cravings as well as the emotional roots that can often be tangled up in them.

You’re having a hard time coping with a chronic health issue

Our mental health can often be a reflection and an extension of our physical health. There’s a reason that many of the tips on how to take care of your mental health include things like getting enough sleep and exercise. As outlined at, the effects of chronic physical illness or disability can go much further than your body and can affect your mind just as much. Whether it’s the pain, the effects of medication, the lack of independence in areas of your life, or being put out of work, these can compound. If you’re already visiting your doctor regularly to treat your chronic condition, you should mention any emotional difficulties you’re having, as well, and they may be able to offer help or refer you to someone who can.

You’ve lost a loved one or close friend

Moments of great trauma, sadness, or stress can have a profound impact on our mental health, and few are more impactful than the loss of someone that you cared about. The absence in your life, and having to cope with the deep sense of grief that can come with it can provoke a mental health spiral. While grieving is natural, if you’re having trouble processing the loss or your emotions following it, then you might need help. As shows, grief counseling is a widely sought-after service, and there are free options that might be available to you, too.

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You suspect you might have a mental health disorder

Depression, stress, anxiety, and addiction are all serious mental health issues that need to be addressed, but it’s important to remember that there aren’t the only ones to consider. Amongst the most common mental health disorders, there are also issues like PTSD, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia that need to be considered. Symptoms that you should not ignore include things like social isolation, self-harm ideation, delusions, and hallucinations, as well as extreme swings in mood. Your symptoms do not have to tick neat boxes for them to be worth checking out. Everyone’s experience of mental health is already so different from one another’s, it’s not likely that your experience will fit any description perfectly. If you have any concerning symptoms, you should talk about them.

When it comes to serious mental and emotional health issues, no one should be expected to cope alone, and no one should try to do it alone, either. If any of the above instances sound familiar to you, please consider looking for some help.