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How to Help Someone with a Mental Illness


During the last decade, society has gained a lot of awareness about mental health. People are becoming more understanding and aware of mental illnesses.

We all go through hard times, and people help us. Other times we are the ones worried about the mental health of our loved ones. Whether it’s friends, family, or colleagues, there are many ways to support those you care about beyond recommending a professional like Positive Reset Mental Health Clinic.

Table of Contents

How to notice that someone has a mental health problem

Sometimes it seems obvious when someone is having a hard time, but there is no easy way to know if they have mental health issues. Sometimes you don’t need to be 100 percent sure. Being sensitive to people with problems is more important than finding out if they have a diagnosis.

Although some symptoms are specific to certain mental illnesses, people behave differently when physically unwell. You may notice changes in their behavior or mood if you know the person well.

Tips to help someone with a mental illness

Here are some things that you should do when someone is struggling with a mental health issue.

1. Show emotional support

You can play a vital role in helping people who feel bad feel less alone and ashamed. They should not be responsible for their illness but may feel that way. This will keep the person with a mental illness motivated and better.

2. Talk with them

One of the hardest but most important steps is to start a conversation with someone you care about. You don’t have to be an expert. You don’t need to be an expert who knows everything.

Start by expressing your concerns and willingness to listen and be there for the other person. Don’t be afraid to talk about it. Reassure them that you care and are there for them.
Use statements emphasizing personal concern. For example, try

  “I’m worried about you…”
  “I want you to consider talking to a counselor…”

Be careful and try not to make any negative statements. Blaming a person with a mental illness is the worst thing you can do.

  Try to show patience and care
  Avoid judging their expressed thoughts and actions
  Listen

Please encourage them to talk to their psychiatric family doctor or primary care doctor, whichever is the best place to start. For some people, it may be helpful to compare the condition with general health conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure.

  Remind them that asking for help is not a sign of weakness but strength


3. Recommend therapy

Offer to help make the first doctor’s appointment, try to find out what the issue is, and accompany the person to the doctor’s appointment – these initial steps can be difficult. If you are accompanying this person, please write any notes or questions in advance so you can answer their queries. Or consider telehealth services to minimize any anxiousness!


4. Understanding the importance of your help

You may worry that you don’t know how to best help or that you’ll make things worse by saying the wrong thing. But the little things we say or do can make a necessary difference in someone’s life. Letting them know you’re watching their games can be a big help.

People may be afraid to let others know they can’t handle it, but merely connecting with someone is a relief. Starting a conversation can be difficult, and it’s normal to feel uneasy when someone you care about is struggling. But it helps keep them calm and reassure them that they don’t have to do it alone. You can also spend time with them in other ways, such as cooking for them, going for a walk, or watching a movie together.

Chatting can feel more natural if you do something together first. Fear often prevents us from talking openly about our mental health issues. By learning more about mental health issues and their prevalence, we can break down these barriers and speak more openly.


5. Helping with the treatment process

If you spend a lot of time with someone you care about, you can remind them to take their medications. You can also help by telling your doctor if the patient isn’t taking medicine regularly. You can also remind your loved one to complete a counseling task, use light therapy every morning, or remind your loved one to make an appointment or save a therapy appointment.

If you discover that your loved one is having a problem with their medication, you can encourage them to talk to their doctor. They can suggest ways to make it easier to take medicine if you have other concerns about the medication, such as side effects. You should encourage your loved one to discuss their concerns with their doctor.


6. Stay calm through the process

Although it can be sad to hear that a loved one is in pain, try to stay calm and collected. This will help your loved ones feel comfortable and show them they can talk to you openly without interrupting. You may want to know more details about their thoughts and feelings, or you may want them to get help immediately. But it’s important to let them set their own pace when seeking support.



Helping someone with a mental illness is important. If your loved one is going through a phase, you should be there for them. Try to offer your maximum support and comfort. You should also talk to their medical health expert and find out how you can be more helpful, or contact us for assistance!

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Frequently Asked Questions

How Can I Recognize Signs of a Mental Health Issue in Someone I Care About?

Recognizing signs of mental health problems in someone you care about can be challenging, but it’s crucial to be sensitive to behavioral and mood changes. While not everyone may have a formal diagnosis, showing empathy and understanding is more important than pinpointing the exact issue.

What's the Best Way to Show Emotional Support to Someone Struggling with Mental Illness?

Offering emotional support is key when someone is dealing with a mental health issue. Your support can help alleviate feelings of loneliness and shame. Make sure they know they’re not alone in their struggle.

How Do I Initiate a Conversation with Someone About Their Mental Health?

Starting a conversation about mental health can be daunting, but it’s vital. Express your concerns and let them know you’re there to listen and support. Avoid negative statements and judgment, emphasizing your care and willingness to assist.

Should I Recommend Therapy for a Friend or Loved One with a Mental Health Issue?

Recommending therapy can be immensely helpful. Offer to help with finding a suitable therapist and accompany them to appointments, as the initial steps can be daunting. Encourage them to seek professional help and support them in this journey.

How Can I Understand the Importance of My Support in Their Recovery?

It’s natural to doubt your ability to help, but even small gestures can make a significant difference. Your support and reassurance that you’re there for them can provide immense comfort during their mental health journey.

How Can I Assist with Their Treatment Process?

If you spend considerable time with them, help ensure they adhere to their treatment plan. Remind them to take medications and complete therapy tasks. Encourage open communication with their doctor and address any concerns they may have.

How Should I Stay Calm and Collected When Discussing Their Mental Health?

It’s important to remain calm and collected when discussing their mental health, even if you’re concerned. This will help them feel comfortable and willing to open up. Allow them to set the pace for seeking support, and remember that being there is what matters most.
Supporting someone with a mental illness is a significant step towards their recovery. Show empathy, patience, and commitment, and don’t hesitate to seek professional assistance, such as the services offered at Positive Reset Mental Health Clinic in New Jersey, for comprehensive support and guidance.

What Are Some Ways to Provide Practical Assistance to Someone with Mental Illness?

Practical assistance can be invaluable. Offer to help with daily tasks, such as cooking or housework, to ease their burden. Simple acts of kindness can significantly improve their well-being.

How Can I Encourage Them to Stay Committed to Treatment?

Encouraging their commitment to treatment is essential. Remind them to take their prescribed medications and support them in following through with counseling tasks or therapy appointments. Your involvement can make a substantial difference.

What Are Some Common Misconceptions About Mental Health?

It’s important to be aware of common misconceptions surrounding mental health. Educate yourself to better understand the challenges someone with a mental illness may face. Dispelling these myths can contribute to a more empathetic and supportive environment.

How Can I Promote Mental Health Awareness in My Community?

Being an advocate for mental health awareness can have a significant impact. Participate in local initiatives, support mental health organizations, and engage in conversations about mental well-being to create a more inclusive and supportive community.

How Can I Address Mental Health Stigma When Supporting a Loved One?

Stigma can be a significant barrier to mental health care. When supporting someone with mental illness, work to challenge and reduce stigma. Encourage open dialogue and foster an environment where they feel safe seeking help.

What Can I Do to Take Care of My Own Mental Well-Being While Supporting Others?

Caring for your mental well-being is crucial when helping someone with a mental illness. Ensure you have a support system and seek guidance if needed. Remember that you can’t pour from an empty cup, and taking care of yourself is essential.

How Can I Encourage Them to Reach Out to Mental Health Professionals?

Encouraging your loved one to reach out to mental health professionals is a critical step. Provide information about available services, offer to assist in finding the right therapist, and help with scheduling appointments.

What Should I Do If My Loved One Refuses Help for Their Mental Health Issue?

If your loved one refuses help, it can be challenging. Continue offering support, keep the lines of communication open, and be patient. It may take time for them to accept help, but your unwavering support is essential.

How Can I Be an Ally to Someone with Mental Illness in the Workplace?

Promoting a supportive work environment is crucial for those with mental illness. Be an ally by understanding their challenges, advocating for their needs, and encouraging workplace policies that promote mental well-being.

What Are the Available Resources for Mental Health Support in New Jersey?

In New Jersey, several resources can provide mental health support. Positive Reset Mental Health Clinic is one such resource offering a range of services. Explore local options and connect with professionals who can offer guidance.

How Can I Foster a Positive Environment at Home for Someone with Mental Illness?

Creating a positive and supportive home environment is essential. Encourage open communication, provide a safe space for expression, and engage in activities that promote mental well-being, such as relaxation and mindfulness.

How Can I Help a Loved One with a Mental Illness Navigate Their Daily Life?

Helping your loved one navigate daily life is a practical way to support them. Assist with tasks that may be challenging during difficult times, such as organizing schedules, managing responsibilities, and offering companionship.

How Do I Recognize the Progress My Loved One Is Making in Managing Their Mental Health?

Recognizing and celebrating their progress is vital. Keep a journal of milestones and achievements, no matter how small. Acknowledge their efforts and encourage them to continue their journey toward better mental health.
Supporting someone with a mental illness is a journey that requires patience, understanding, and unwavering support. By taking these steps and accessing resources like Positive Reset Mental Health Clinic in New Jersey, you can make a significant difference in their life.