Types of help

Need help, but not sure what your options are? Figure out where to go when you might need help. There’s a few different types of help – online and email help can be a good place to start. You can use telephone help lines or access different types of face-to-face help if you want to talk to someone. If it’s an emergency or you just don’t know where to start, start here.

This can help if:

  • You want to get help but you're not sure where to start 
  • You want to learn about the different types of help available 
  • You want to try another form of help
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When you might need help

Whether it's something that might seem silly, something pretty serious, or a total emergency, there are help services with people that have been trained to be able to point you in the right direction.

Online and email help

There's a few different types of services online. Some of the good places to go are:

  • Forums. A lot of places provide online forums, question and answer services, or support groups. The ReachOut.com forums are often a good place to start to get questions answered by other people who have been through tough situations before.
  • Online counselling. A lot of services like Lifeline, headspace and Kids Helpline offer online chat or email counselling, to make it easy to talk to someone without exposing yourself. Check out the key ones on our help page.
  • Online mental health programs. There are a few online mental health assessment tools or programs. Chat to a doctor, counsellor or psychologist if you want to try one out, or have a go at some of the free ReachOut.com online tools in the Apps and Tools section.

Telephone help lines

There's a bunch of different telephone help lines offered by different services. They usually have trained counsellors, often young people, to give advice or direction.

  • If you need urgent help there are a few of the best general counselling / support telephone help lines on our help page.
  • Need support for a specific topic? Many services exist that specialise in a particular life issue - like sexuality, alcohol, sexual assault etc. Check out those topics on the site to see if there are any phone services we have listed

Face-to-face help

A lot of the time, it's best to chat to someone face-to-face about what you're going through. Working out what's going on will be much easier and quicker if you have professional help. If it's a mental health question, your doctor is actually a good place to start - they can give a quick assessment and find someone in your area for you to talk to. They can also write a referral which can help 'introduce you to a service.' For info on the different types of face-to-face help check out our info on different types of counsellors and professionals.

Emergency services

If someone is hurt, suicidal, if there is an emergency situation you can't deal with on your own, or if you think someone's safety is at risk you should call emergency services by dialling 000. It's always better to be safe.

Where to start

Still not sure what type of help will get you where you need to go? Give a 24 hour service like Lifeline (13 11 14) or Kids Helpline (1800 55 1800) a call and they can usually give a little advice and point you in the right direction.

What can I do now?

Last reviewed: 25 November, 2015
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