Free and Low Cost Resources for Mental Health During Quarantine

By: Jayson Tripp, MD


Right now is a difficult time across the globe with wildfires in Australia, a worldwide virus pandemic, earthquakes in some places in the US, and businesses closing for the foreseeable future. It’s no wonder that so many of us are feeling a strain on our mental health. While there are many things you can do at home , sometimes using at home coping strategies isn’t enough, and you may need to reach out. Where can you reach out you ask when everything seems to be closed? And what if you lost your job and don’t have resources to spend on mental health help? This article is to be used as a reference for free and low-cost resources you can utilize to help improve and maintain your mental health during difficult times, available for use from home for little or no cost.

1. Reach out through the Crisis Text Line.

The Crisis Text Line is a great resource for you if you are feeling anxious or depressed. Available in the USA and Canada, if you are struggling, you can chat with a trained crisis counselor. Sometimes just being able to talk to someone about what you are feeling and work through it with an outside perspective can lessen overwhelming mental illness symptoms. The crisis text line is available 24/7 every day of the year. If you live in the US, you can text 85258, or if you live in Canada, you can text 686868.

2. Use an online counseling service, such as BetterHelp.

 BetterHelp  specializes in affordable accessible counseling and offers video, text, and call support. This is a great way to make sure you are doing everything possible to keep your depression, anxiety, or other mental illness at bay. There is a 7 day free trial period, and if you decide to keep using it long term, the low cost helps to make continuing your counseling feasible. If it’s still too much, financial assistance is available for those that qualify.

3. Contact a warmline near you.

While emergency hotlines are increasingly overwhelmed by calls, a warmline is a number available for mental health support to help prevent emergencies from happening. You can receive support, talk to someone who cares about you, and get resources relevant to your situation. Most warmlines are staffed by people who have experienced or currently experience depression, anxiety, or other mental health conditions, so they can relate to what you are going through personally. Many warmlines are local but, some are more widespread. You can find an unofficial list of warmlines here , or search for a warmline near you.

4. Try What’s Up

What’s up is a fre e app that uses two different therapy methods (CBT: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and ACT: Acceptance Commitment Therapy) to help you cope with mental illnesses such as stress-induced anxiety. You can track your habits to help you break bad ones and establish positive ones instead. You can find grounding techniques, record your feelings in the in-app journal, and even find strategies to alter negative thinking patterns.

5. Last but not least, reach out to Serenity Mental Health Centers.

Unlike the others on this list, Serenity is not an online or at home resource, but if you are looking for long-term treatment for a mental health condition such as depression or anxiety, Serenity might be a good option for you. Serenity Mental Health Centers  can be found in 3 different states— Utah, Arizona, and Colorado, and are still currently fully operational. We offer med management, TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulation), and ketamine therapy treatments. To learn more about what we offer and if it’s right for you, contact us .

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*All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.