Do you agree that everyone faces mental health challenges, sooner or later? We think so! Trusted mental and behavioral health practitioners believe that the more we realize mental health needs are normal, the more we can grow in our own health, peace, and happiness.
The truth is: everyone has mental health needs, everyone needs mental health resources, and what we need looks different for each of us. If you grew up not talking about feelings and how feelings can lead to actions, a good place to start is just remembering that mental health is normal, and asking for help is good, healthy, and normal.
What do you need today?
Whether we are five, fifteen, or fifty, we experience a variety of mental and behavioral health needs. Sometimes we simply need to act on what we know, for example, when we’re stressed, sometimes it is helpful to take deep breaths, take a break, stretch, take a walk, or other safe and gentle ways of releasing stress from our bodies.
The normal, natural help for our mental health ranges from taking positive actions, to talking to a counselor, to talking with medical providers, to starting a treatment program. All of this is normal. Everyone needs a safe person to talk to, everyone needs help understanding how to handle stress, sadness, danger, loss, and anger.
How do you get the help you need?
One of Community’s longest relationships is with ECHOS and its leader Cathy Moore. Cathy spoke with us recently about how more people are asking for help with mental and behavioral needs. ECHOS serves a wide variety of people in the Houston area, and shared some of their recommendations for mental health services.
Are you insured with Community or another health insurer?
First, if you have health insurance, you can start the conversation with your regular physical doctor, nurse, or clinic. They can connect you with mental and behavioral health providers. Sometimes, your doctor or nurse can even make an appointment on your behalf.
Important: You don’t have to talk with your primary care provider first. If you’re covered with health insurance, whether Marketplace, Medicaid, CHIP, Medicare, or another plan, you can almost always simply contact a provider in your network offering counseling, therapy, or other mental and behavioral health services.
Are you currently uninsured?
If you’re not covered with access to care, Houston still has many people and places that offer help for adults, teens, and children. Here is a sample of some of the organizations ECHOS recommends for their clients who are not covered with health insurance:
- DePelchin Children’s Center: https://www.depelchin.org/
- Bo’s Place: https://www.bosplace.org/en/
- The Harris Center: https://www.theharriscenter.org/
- The Houston Area Women’s Center (HAWC): https://hawc.org/
- The Montrose Center: https://www.montrosecenter.org/
- The Council on Recovery: https://www.councilonrecovery.org/
- ECHOS – Thank you Cathy Moore and ECHOS for serving our community and recommending these organizations: https://echos-houston.org/
If you can’t find an appointment right away, you can call 311 in Houston to ask for additional recommendations. Also, if you’re currently uninsured, please call us at (713) 295-2222 and we’ll connect you to someone who can review health insurance eligibility and your coverage options.
If you have an urgent need to talk to someone today, you can call the national NAMI HelpLine Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. – 9 p.m., Houston (Central time), at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264). You can also text them by sending NAMI to 741-741.
If you’re experiencing mental health distress, including thoughts of suicide, call or text 988 to get help. Trained crisis counselors are ready to listen and support you through the challenges you may be facing.
When you’re feeling low, it’s important to reach out to others for help. Connecting with others can help you feel supported and give you a sense of belonging. Don’t forget, you’re not alone in this.
The 988 Lifeline is available in Spanish for calls, text, and chat.