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Mental Health


FREE services are available 24 hours, 7 days a week:

Beyond Blue 1300 22 4636 or online -

Kids Help Line  1800 55 1800 -

Lifeline  13 11 14 (24 hour crisis hotline) -

Mens Line 1300 78 99 78 -

Suicide Call Back Service  1300 659 467 -


What does "mental health" mean?

Mental health refers to a wide range of behavioural and/or psychological problems characterised by anxiety, mood swings, depression or a compromised assessment of reality (such as a psychotic episode  where you may experience hallucinations or delusions). 

These behaviours persist over time.

Good mental health is a sense of wellbeing, confidence and self-esteem. It enables people to fully enjoy and appreciate other people, day-to-day life and activities.

How common is it to have a mental illness?

More common than you would think! 

Many people experience at least one episode of mental illness during their lifetime, ranging from a brief period of mild illness to those experiencing lifelong symptoms which can be severe and very disabling.

In 2007, 45% of Australians aged 16-85 years, (or 7.3 million people), had at some point in their lifetime experienced a mental disorder. (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2009). Further estimates in 2009 suggest that one in five Australians may have symptoms of a mental illness for at least some portion of their life. More information and reading can be found at:

Where can I find further help if I, or someone I know, may have a mental illness?

Mental Health Commission in Western Australia provides a good definition of what is mental health.

Mental Health Services in Australia -  providing information about the national response to the mental health care needs of Australians.

Australian Child and Adolescent Trauma, Loss and Grief Network - a network linking people across Australia concerned with the trauma, loss and grief experiences of children and adolescents.

Beyond Blue – information on depression, prevention, awareness and early intervention of depression and related illnesses.

Black Dog Institute - educational, research, clinical and community-oriented facility offering specialist expertise in depression and bipolar disorder.

Health Insite - information on a variety of health topics, including mental health.

Lifeline Australia - provides telephone counselling, and information and referral to services.

Living is for Everyone (LIFE) - suicide and self-harm prevention in Australia.

Mental Health in Multicultural Australia (MHiMA) - builds awareness of mental health and suicide prevention amongst Australians from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Mind Health Connect - national e-mental health online portal.

Mind Matters - the national mental health promotion, prevention and early intervention initiative for Australian secondary schools.

MindSpot Clinic - Tel: 1800 61 44 34 - a national clinic that provides free online and telephone assessment and treatment for Australian adults with stress, worry, anxiety, low mood or depression.

National Eating Disorders Collaboration (NEDC) - a voluntary collaboration that brings together eating disorders stakeholders and experts in mental health, public health, health promotion, education, research and the media to help develop a nationally consistent approach to eating disorders in Australia.

Kids Matter - supports mental health promotion, prevention and early intervention for children through universal, evidence-based primary school and early childhood programs.

Understanding Anxiety -part of the Mental Health Association of NSW is a site to help people access support and services.

Way Ahead - directory for mental health services in NSW.

What resources exist for young people?

Children of Parents with a Mental Illness - promotes better mental health outcomes for children whose parents have a mental illness.

Headspace, National Youth Mental Health Foundation - provides health advice, support and information to young Australians aged 12-25 years.

Kids Help Line - provides a free 24 hour national telephone and online counselling service for young people aged between 5 and 25 in Australia. - a youth mental health service providing practical tools, forums and information in a safe and anonymous online environment.