Recognizing a Mental Health Crisis
What is a Mental Health Crisis?
A mental health crisis means that a person’s feelings or problems are so strong that they cannot do what they need to do that day. A mental health crisis may also mean that the person is at risk of hurting themselves or others.
Signs of a Mental Health Crisis:
These are some common signs that you or someone else
may be having a mental health crisis:
- Not able to do daily activities like bathing, brushing teeth, or changing clothes
- Changes in mood, increased energy level, or restless
- Suddenly sad, withdrawn, not wanting to be around other people
- Angry, verbal threats, violent, destroy property
- Using drugs or other substances, self-harm like cutting, abusive behavior
- Not able to recognize family or friends, confused, strange ideas, thinks they are someone they are not, hearing voices, seeing things that are not there
How Long Does a Mental Health Crisis Last?
- Sometimes a crisis will only last a few minutes.
- Sometimes a crisis can last for days or months.
- It depends on how quickly the person is able to get help and the type of coping skills they have.
- If a person is able to widen their resilient or “OK” zone they may be able to recover from a mental health crisis more quickly.
This information was developed by the Autism Services, Education, Resources, and Training Collaborative (ASERT). For more information, please contact ASERT at 877-231-4244 or info@PAautism.org. ASERT is funded by the Bureau of Supports for Autism and Special Populations, PA Department of Human Services.