Urgent support advice for mental health crises

Don't struggle alone

If you are having thoughts of suicide, are harming yourself or have thought about self-harm, it's important to tell someone.

These thoughts and feelings can be complex, frightening and confusing, but you do not have to struggle alone.

Employee's guide

When to get urgent support

If you are concerned about your mental health, visiting your GP is a good place to start. In most areas, you can also refer yourself for free, non-urgent NHS psychological therapy services, also known as IAPT (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies) services, which provide evidence-based treatments for depression and anxiety.

IAPT services

It's important to seek help from your GP immediately if you are experiencing the symptoms below for the first time or are not already receiving care from mental health services:

  • Hallucinations – Hearing or seeing things that are not there (for example, hearing voices); this can also include feeling, smelling or tasting things that are not there
  • Delusions – Having strong beliefs that are not shared by others (for example, believing there is a conspiracy against you)

These are symptoms of psychosis and it's important to get treated as soon as possible, as early treatment is more effective.

If you cannot wait to see a doctor and feel unable to cope or keep yourself safe, contact one of the organisations below to get support right away. Or see further NHS advice on dealing with a mental health crisis or emergency.

NHS advice

Get urgent support

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When life is tough, Samaritans are here to listen at any time of the day or night. You can talk to them about anything that's troubling you, no matter how difficult.

Call free on 116 123

Visit the Samaritans website

However you're feeling right now, you don't have to face it alone. We're here to support you with your mental health. Take a look at our resources, information and support, find further help or reach out to one of our volunteers.

Text 85258

Visit the Shout website

If you are under 35 and feel that life is not worth living any more, call Papyrus's HopelineUK from 9am to 10pm weekdays and 2pm to 10pm on weekends.

Call HopelineUK on 0800 068 41 41 or  text 07786 209697

Visit the Papyrus website

Manager's guide

Many people struggle to cope at one point or another of their lives. Experiencing a range of emotions during these times is common.

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You might not always be able to spot these signs, and these emotions show up differently in everyone.

It can also be useful to identify these situations that can trigger suicidal thoughts or make it hard for someone to cope.

Again, these may not apply to everyone who is struggling, but they can be useful to look out for.

What you can do

Extreme distress or emergency situation

Coping in a situation where you are faced with an employee or colleague who is extremely distressed is very difficult and can be upsetting.
First of all, try to stay calm. Talk to the employee or colleague calmly and empathetically. If you are not able to encourage them to look at the Occupational Health web pages and/or contact their own GP - or other services - you have two options:

  • If you think they are extremely distressed but it is not life threating, you can call the NHS 111 and speak to an advisor- they will guide you through the next steps (it is preferable to have the employee’s consent before taking this step, but you can call NHS 111 without it, if absolutely necessary)

  • If you think they are in immediate danger, you can call an ambulance on 999

It is important to talk to the employee to let them know you are taking these steps. Explain them that you are very worried and that you believe they need help. Most people are thankful that someone is trying to help. It is preferable to have the employee’s consent, but you can call the NHS 111 without it, if absolutely necessary. 


Contact us

Occupational Health Services

10 Parks Road

Oxford OX1 3PD



 01865 (2)82676


Opening hours

 Monday - Thursday: 8.30am to 5pm

 Friday: 8.30am to 4pm


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