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Crisis Services

ASERT does not offer crisis services through our Resource Center. If you or someone you love is experiencing mental health distress or thoughts of suicide please call or text 988 for support.

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Recognizing a Mental Health Crisis

What is a Mental Health Crisis?

A mental health crisis means that a person’s feelings or problems are so strong that they cannot do what they need to do that day. A mental health crisis may also mean that the person is at risk of hurting themselves or others.

Signs of a Mental Health Crisis:

Cartoon of a woman who is stressed, she is holding a sign that reads "HELP!".

These are some common signs that you or someone else
may be having a mental health crisis:

    • Not able to do daily activities like bathing, brushing teeth, or changing clothes
    • Changes in mood, increased energy level, or restless
    • Suddenly sad, withdrawn, not wanting to be around other people
    • Angry, verbal threats, violent, destroy property
    • Using drugs or other substances, self-harm like cutting, abusive behavior
    • Not able to recognize family or friends, confused, strange ideas, thinks they are someone they are not, hearing voices, seeing things that are not there

How Long Does a Mental Health Crisis Last?

    • Sometimes a crisis will only last a few minutes.
    • Sometimes a crisis can last for days or months.
    • It depends on how quickly the person is able to get help and the type of coping skills they have.
    • If a person is able to widen their resilient or “OK” zone they may be able to recover from a mental health crisis more quickly.


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This information was developed by the Autism Services, Education, Resources, and Training Collaborative (ASERT). For more information, please contact ASERT at 877-231-4244 or info@PAautism.org. ASERT is funded by the Bureau of Supports for Autism and Special Populations, PA Department of Human Services.