Should You Talk to Someone About a Drug, Alcohol, or Mental Health Problem?

Substance use and mental health problems are treatable, and help is available.

Many people have both substance use disorders and mental health challenges. It is important to receive treatment for both to get better. Treatment works. Recovery starts with understanding that you may have one or both of these problems.

These questions can help you decide whether you need help with substance use, with a mental health issue, or with both.

  • Over the past two weeks, have you felt down, depressed, or hopeless?
  • Over the past two weeks, have you felt little interest or pleasure in doing things?
  • In the past year, have you had significant problems with insomnia, bad dreams, or falling asleep during the day?
  • In the past year, have you thought about ending your life or had thoughts about suicide?*

*If you have had thoughts of not wanting to live, or harming yourself or anyone else, talk to or text someone immediately. Call 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) or text “CONNECT” to 855-11. Do it NOW.

  • In the past year, have you had a hard time paying attention at school, work, or home?
  • Have you ever felt you should cut down on your drinking or drug use (use less alcohol or drugs)?
  • Have people annoyed (irritated, angered, etc.) you by criticizing your drinking or drug use?
  • Have you ever felt bad or guilty about your drinking or drug use?
  • Have you ever taken a drink or a drug first thing in the morning (an eye-opener) to steady your nerves or get rid of a hangover?

In the past, have you ever:

  • (for men) Had five or more drinks in a day?
  • (for women or anyone over age 65) Had four or more drinks in a day?
  • Used recreational or prescription drugs to get high?

Unless you answered "never" to all of the above questions, talk to your doctor, a nurse, or a counselor about the details of your situation. They can help you decide what to do next. They may also help you find more information and resources.

For more local information, contact:

  • Emergency numbers – answered 24/7
  • Main CSB phone number for accessing services and information

 A better, healthier life may be closer than you think.

Printable brochure

This content is based on information published in 2010 by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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Tisha Deeghan, Executive Director

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