Where to Find Help for Suicidal Ideation in Australia
This post aims to provide Australians with supports and contact numbers for those experiencing suicidal ideation in Australia. It also includes a list of resources available during times of crisis or struggling to cope with things in their life or someone they know. I also include some tips on how to talk with someone who you suspect may be feeling suicidal.
Although ideally, it is better to manage mental health before it gets to crisis point, it’s not something we necessarily tend to do. Instead can find ourselves experiencing a crisis before learning some strategies to cope with intense feelings.
Some of the resources listed here are to help one manage and work through mental health before things get worse such as Reachout, Mensline and SANE.
One way to prevent and manage mental health for instance is to practice self care on a regular basis. This can help one manage stress and anxiety levels before they escalate. Having a pet can also be a very practical way of managing challenging thoughts as they can be considered protective factors. Read more about the benefits of having a pet for managing your mental health here. Focusing on your wellbeing is also important in managing when your stress increases.
Additionally, practicing self soothing strategies can also be valuable in managing suicidal thoughts. Here’s a thorough list for you to work through.
If you are at immediate risk of harm or risk to yourself or others call one of the numbers below to get immediate help.
Suicide Helplines and Resources – Australia
Suicide CallBack Service
1300 659 467
24hrs a day 7 days a week
Cost of a local call
Suicide Callback Service is a nationwide service available for anyone experiencing suicidal thoughts. Provided by professionals via telephone and online counselling any time of the day or night, anywhere in Australia.
They have resources on the website to help anyone:
- feeling suicidal
- worried about someone who is feeling suicidal
- has lost someone to suicide
- and health professionals supporting those experiencing suicidal ideation
The website also includes a Virtual Assistant called Claire who can provide you with a progressive muscle relaxation program to help manage stress and improve mental function.
There is also a safety plan app called the ReMinder app.
The ReMinder app helps you:
- create your own team of supports during times of crisis
- what you can do to calm your intense feelings
- Create a list for reasons to life.
- Make your environment safe
- Keep the name and contact details of the nearest hospital to access during times of crisis
- Names of professionals you can speak with and resources to keep yourself safe.
- Make a safety plan commitment to yourself to keep yourself safe when feeling suicidal.
13 11 14
24 hours a day 7 days a week.
Cost of a local call. Could be more from mobiles.
A national charity organisation for crisis intervention and suicide prevention for those living in Australia. For anyone over the age of 18 yrs.
Lists Fact Sheets and Coping Kit to help when feeling suicidal or struggling to manage intense feelings.
Fact Sheets have information for a variety of topics:
- if you are worried about someone being suicidal
- if you have lost someone to suicide
- domestic violence
- financial stress and food
- psychotic illness
- grief and loss
1300 22 46 36
Cost of a local call
For anyone, any age, any background, male, female, non binary, where ever you live in Australia.
They also offer an app called beyond now designed to help develop a safety plan for managing when feeling suicidal and at risk of harm. There is lots of helpful information for anyone experiencing challenging thoughts around depression and suicide.
The website includes information on:
- Stats of how many men take their life per day in Australia
- Information on wellbeing
- Supporting yourself
- Supporting someone who is suicidal
- Facts about mental health
- Personal stories
- Treatment options
1800 55 1800
24hrs a day 7 days a week
Free call from all landlines, and most mobile phones
Ages: 5 yrs – 25 yrs
Access: Phone, web chat and email
Heaps of information listed on the website for:
- primary aged young people,
- young adults
It is subdivided into these age groups with sections for particular topics to research that is age appropriate.
Young people can get support for a wide range of issues including bullying, relationships, abuse, self harm, suicidal thoughts, mental health, cyberbullying, friendship issues and anything else that a young person might struggle with and need support from a caring professional. Plus really helpful tips and strategies on the site for a young person or parent to access for support in their world.
There’s quizzes about feelings that Spongebob guides you through. And a new gaming and live streams page called Twitch that you can find out more here.
Available for young people, parents, and carers of young people to learn more of young people’s issues.
Has valuable resources for when you are looking into the issues you are facing. Best to look this information up before reaching a crisis point.
Offers support, tools and tips for managing a range of issues from everyday issues through to mental illness and crisis intervention.
Some examples include:
- Gender and Identity
- Anxiety and Depression
- Self harm
Some of the tools that are included as coping strategies include:
- chats for life – an app that helps you plan to have a conversations with someone you’re concerned about their safety and mental wellbeing
- theCheckIn – an app also designed to help you learn what to say to a friend you’re concerned about.
- MoodMission – an app that helps you manage your moods when feeling low or anxious. Based on Cognitive Behaviour Therapy to help you learn new and better ways to cope with anxiety and depression.
- Pacifica – an app that has been designed by psychologists to help one manage stress, anxiety and depression with helpful strategies.
- Stop Breathe and Think – an app that helps learn how to meditate and practice mindfulness.
1800 650 890
Free call from landlines and most mobile phones. Face to face appointments are free when you get a Mental Health Plan through a referral from your GP.
A service for young people aged between 12 yrs to 25 yrs.
They offer face to face counselling as well as online web chat and phone counselling.
eheadspace is the online portal for support using phone and web chat.
If you are looking for a location in Australia to see a face to face therapist go to their find a centre page.
Phone: 1300 78 99 78
Cost of a local call.
Offers phone, webchat and email 24 hours a day.
A service for men struggling with issues happening in their lives. This can range from separation, anger, mental health, relationships, being a parent etc.
Offers phone and online counselling any time anywhere within Australia. Also offers useful tips and information online relevant to managing the wide range of issues men face living in Australia.
1800 187 263
Free call from all landlines and most mobiles
Offers phone contact, email support, forums and information on the website.
Sane is a service for those experiencing mental health illness or families of a loved one living with mental illness. Sometimes, however, people with a mental illness might deteriorate with their mental health becoming suicidal or agitated and become a risk to others. You can contact SANE who can help assess the situation and provide support or referrals for you.
You can also contact your local Crisis Assessment Treatment Team (CATT) at the closest major hospital to the person of concern. The CATT team are a multidisciplinary team made up of psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers and nurses. They can assess the needs of the individual struggling with a mental illness and can decide whether hospitalisation is required or can be admitted to hospital to help manage the condition. If the individual is a risk to themselves or others, they are likely to be hospitalised to help keep them safe.
Operating Hours for Phone line – 10am – 10pm AEST
Forums – moderated 24 hours a day
000 if you are at immediate risk to yourself or others. Free call.
If you are a friend or family member it’s okay to call emergency services if you believe someone is at risk of ending their lives. If you know the address of the individual of concern they will send an ambulance. When you don’t know of the location or unsure if the person is safe, police can be sent to do a welfare check who could also have ambulance arrive too.
If you are struggling to keep yourself safe due to suicidal thoughts, or have immediate intention to act on these thoughts, you or a friend can call an ambulance. They will take you to the nearest hospital where you can talk with mental health workers who can support you through this difficult time.
You can also present to your local emergency department who can assess and help you keep yourself or your family member safe from harm.
Is a collaborative campaign between mental health and suicide prevention national organisations to open up the discussion and empower everyone to find a voice in being able to ask someone if they feel suicidal.
Half of the Australian population are afraid to ask a person if they are feeling suicidal for fear of what the answer might be. #youcantalk is a new direction for suicide prevention in Australia.
Tips for talking about suicide:
- You don’t need to be a professional to check in with someone about whether they are feeling suicidal.
- Don’t avoid them, it’s better to be around them and check in how they are feeling.
- Trust your instincts. If you suspect someone might be feeling suicidal, it’s okay to ask them.
- Be prepared for them to possibly say yes.
- Use tools for managing how to support the individual
- Listen with compassion. Don’t fix their situation. Be empathic.
- Find out who they feel comfortable sharing their concerns with including other possible supports such as the ones listed above.
- Ensure they are safe and if they can’t agree to keep themselves safe, contact emergency services or take them to a hospital.
- Go to https://www.ruok.org.au/how-to-ask for more tips
If you know anyone experiencing suicidal thoughts or you yourself have been having suicidal thoughts, talk to someone you feel comfortable with and can trust. Call a professional service for immediate support to help you get through the suicidal thoughts you’re having.
Don’t act on the thoughts. Thoughts are just thoughts, they aren’t real. They can pass if you get support and practice some strategies to help manage how you feel. There’s even more information in this article.
15 Replies to “Australian Suicide Helplines and Resources”
This website is so important. I’m glad I came across it, although I do not live in Australia. The tips, however, are extremely useful. It struck me when I read that you don’t have to be a professional to talk to someone who might be thinking of suicide. It is true, you need to be there for them, remind them of the beauty of life, keep those destructive thoughts away.
They’re thoughts, no more, you’re right, but thoughts go through our minds non stop …
I’m glad to see that there are help apps, I didn’t even know that.
Hi Christine, thanks for stopping by. The apps are helpful for many people. There are heaps more, these are the ones that au.reachout.com share. I’ve intentionally only listed free apps. Talking about suicide and asking questions about it will help someone feel listened to and understood instead of judged and feel safe than if no one asked them about how they feel. Thanks for sharing your thoughts ~kat
Thank you for listing the website and call recommendation! This will be very helpful for my cousin, who recently has just started working in Australia. He has talked to me once about his attempt for suicide, so it still worry me if he still hasn’t fully recovered from his problems. I always maintain communication with him to check, just in case. I will give your article to him and our relative in Australia, in case they don’t know about this information. Thank you very much
Hi, it’s great that you’ve been checking in with your cousin. It sounds like he’s been struggling, but has managed for now to keep himself safe. That’s great. Your support will be valuable too, so keep up the contact with him when you can. It would be great if you can share this post with your cousin and he can look up the sites listed here and find help with what he’s struggling with. ~kat
Great helpful article for all Australian about suicide helpline resources. This article is full If information about how to avoid and how we can save someone who has suicide intention. The person who has this type of intention should know Life is very beautiful and I most precious. We shouldn’t try I stop it from living. Yes, I an understand sometimes the situation comes when we can’t control ourselves but will it be solved if we stop our life? No.
In this article, you helped those who needs . My sister lives in Australia, Sydney. She was telling me about one of the incidents last months. I think the man who was victim his family couldn’t help him to stop from suicide and the reason could be they didn’t where to seek help. Sometimes suicide could be avoidable. I am gonna share this article with my sister today. I will ask her to share everyone In Australia who she knows. I think they definitely found this article helpful. Thanks a lot for this article.
Hi, thanks for sharing your thoughts in this topic. It’s very common for someone who has been having suicidal thoughts to keep it to themselves and not let those around them know how much they are suffering. This is why it’s so important to check in with people around us, ask if they are okay, and learn how to talk about suicide in case someone actually is thinking along these lines and hasn’t shared it with anyone. I hope that people can find this post and read more about suicide to help them find the help they need if they haven’t talked to anyone yet. Thanks for sharing this with your sister. ~kat
Thank you for sharing this very important and useful information. In my country our suicide rates is on the rise rise especially for the elderly.
I find the link to self-help can be applied to our daily lives and I will be using some of them.
Just wondering is a number that take care of anyone regardless of location that is very trouble and needs help.
Hi Marc, usually the person needs to be located in the country that it is provided for. I’ve created a list for international suicide helplines in a previous post for anyone in a different country who needs help in a crisis. ~kat
This article is very sensitive to me because back in 2011 my sister commented suicide. So reading this article immediately brought tears in my eyes because, I know the pain of losing someone close, even though I don’t stay in Australia but I strongly believe that this website will not only help people that stay in Australia but the whole World, that’s the power of the internet. I would also like to thank you for taking time to write this article. Remember people depression kills if your depressed please get help immediately.
Hi, I’m so sorry your sister felt that she had no other options but to take her own life, and this post has triggered your sadness of losing her. I do hope that even though this has Australian services and organisations listed, there can be value found for anyone going online and searching for help with suicidal thoughts. These organisations have so much to offer in terms of support and how to cope and manage intense feelings. Depression is very difficult and complex which often can lead to suicidal thoughts. It’s important to get help immediately if you are at risk of ending your life. Thanks for sharing lobohang Mothata. Blessings ~kat
You´re addressing an important topic here, a topic many people are afraid to talk about. Seems like you have great resources in Australia for suicide prevention! In Finland we have also some helpline phone numbers you can call if you´re feeling suicidal, but we don’t have as many different kinds of resources as you have in Australia, like a meditation app.
That´s such a good reminder; thoughts are just thoughts, they´re not real. Mindfulness can be so empowering; taking your mind back to where your body is. It makes you feel so peaceful and it´s a great help for anxiety.
Hi Kirsti, Australia has excellent resources however due to the nature of suicidal ideation, it’s possible that people don’t access due to the way suicidal thoughts can make one feel so isolated, alone and hopeless so reaching out doesn’t always happen unfortunately. If we can get more people talking about it and asking people around them if they notice any changes, or to check in with them, this could help save a life. All it takes is one conversation to help a person feel that they’re not alone, and they can get help with how they feel. It’s hard if places aren’t available on a 24 hr basis, so this is something I’m grateful for that Australia does well. Thanks for stopping by ~kat
Wow! I’m impressed by this comprehensive list. There is one particular service which really catches my attention – Suicide Callback Service because of the Virtual Assistant, Claire.
I have gone through really down times before and I understand the urgent need to either talk to someone or get some help for immediate mental relief.
Unfortunately, there are times when it can be tough especially when you feel down after office hours when all the helplines are already closed.
Therefore, with the presence of the virtual assistant to provide guidance on ways to relax and manage stress in the meantime, when there is no one to talk to, can be extremely helpful!
I am sure many will benefit from this info.
Hi Lynn, yes, I didn’t realise that the Suicide Callback Service had Claire the virtual assistant till I wrote this post. And I work at one of these services! It’s certainly a unique service available for times of distress as I think it can be really effective in helping one work through a muscle relaxation when feeling intense feelings. I encourage everyone to give it a go if you’re struggling, cos why not! Take care and all the beset ~kat
Wow, this is a very thorough post with a whole spectrum of resources to people who are unfortunately suicidal.
I really like your point about dogs. They have this amazing ability to read human emotion. I watched a documentary about it once.
Do you know any more about this in terms of cats? I have cats and they have always seemed to be receptive to my emotions too but there just seems to be less information available on this.
Thank you for such an informative post!