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Allina Health Mental Health
When to get help
Everyone has good and bad days. But there are times when the troubles of life can interfere with your ability to function or cope.
Talk to someone you trust or connect with the mental health care team nearest you if any of the following apply:
- You feel a great sense of helplessness and sadness, and it doesn't get better despite support from family and friends
- You're finding it hard to cope with everyday activities
- You can't concentrate at work or school, and your performance is suffering
- You can't stop thinking about terribly hurtful experiences from your past. Those memories are hard to talk about
- You feel you're using alcohol or other drugs too much
- Other people are worried about your alcohol or drug use
- Your temper has gotten you into trouble
- You keep getting involved in troubled relationships and can't figure out why
- You're sleeping or eating less or more than usual
- You have wide mood swings
- You're no longer interested in the things that used to interest you
- You worry more than you'd like
- You have obsessions or compulsions that interfere with normal life
- You've experienced panic attacks that make you feel like you're going to pass out or have a heart attack
- Your actions harm others or could be harmful to others.
How to manage stress
Strong emotions can cause your body to make more adrenaline, a hormone that increases your heart rate and blood pressure.
How you handle stress will have an affect on your body and emotional well-being.
Learn about stress and stress management.
Meditation is any activity that keeps your mind focused in the present. When your mind is focused on the present moment, it cannot worry about the past or the future.
Learn more about meditation.
When you are under stress, you need to take good care of yourself.
- Eat well-balanced meals. You may have little time to grab a healthy lunch, but don't go for high-calorie, high-cholesterol fat food. Instead, pack a peanut butter sandwich, fruit and a cookie. Avoid caffeine drinks such as coffee or cola. Instead, drink at least eight glasses of water each day.
- Do not smoke or chew smokeless tobacco. The harmful effects of tobacco will do your body no good.
- Get plenty of rest. Your body and mind need to "reenergize" each night. In the morning, you should feel relaxed and fresh. Sleep eight hours a night.
- Exercise three to five times each week to release stored-up energy. You don't need to do heavy work-outs at a gym. Go for walk, bike rides, swim, join a dance class or do stretching exercises. You may even lose a pound or two.
- Meditate to focus on something relaxing, not stressful. Think of a peaceful place and go there in your mind.
- Ask for help if you can't handle your work load or home duties. There's no shame in admitting you need help.
- Don't worry about things you can't change.
- Write down what causes you stress. Also write down how you handle each situation.
- Avoid as much stress as you can. Try not to drive in rush-hour traffic and avoid situations that make you feel anxious or emotionally drained.
- Schedule things you enjoy (such as taking a bubble bath, visiting or calling a friend, reading or watching sports).
- Take a break. Sit back and take a few deep breaths. Think through your situation.
- Do relaxation exercises.
Mental health support groups
Whether you are a bereaved friend or family member, a teacher, or someone who cares about grieving people, we hope these resources will be helpful.
This education and therapy group is for people with depression and anxiety who want to learn about their illness, and gain coping skills and support from other people who are dealing with similar issues.
Postpartum depression support groups
This ongoing support group offers education and support for women who are experiencing or are at risk for postpartum depression. This group is offered at two locations.
West St. Paul
First Call for Help
West Metro: 952-335-5000
East Metro: 651-224-1133
Anoka County: 763-783-4880
Dakota County: 952-431-2424
Intergroup (AA, Alanon, Adult Children of Alcoholic, Narcotic Anonymous)
St. Paul: 651-227-5502
Crisis Connection Outreach
(7 p.m. to midnight, 24-hour counseling and referral)
Mental Health Association of Minnesota
612-331-6840 or 1-800-862-1799
Mental Health Consumer/Survivor Network of Minnesota
651-637-2800 or 1-800-483-2007
National Alliance for the Mentally Ill of Minnesota
651-645-2948 or 1-800-950-6264
Office of the Ombudsman for Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities
651-296-3848 or 1-800-657-3506
American Association of Suicidology
Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance
National Alliance for the Mentally Ill
Suicide Awareness Voices of Education (SAVE)
952-946-7998 or 1-888-511-7283
In a crisis? Call 1-800-273-8255
Wellness Recovery Action Plan® or WRAP®