Depression: Take the Next Step
Take the Next Step
Now that you’ve learned about depression and available treatment options, take the next step. Explore the following resources and connected care options to get started at VA.
Schedule a mental health appointment.
- If you’re already using VA health care, ask your primary care provider to help you make an appointment for VA mental health services.
- If you're not already using VA health care, contact your nearest VA medical center to talk about your needs. Find your nearest VA medical center or Vet Center
- New to VA? Apply for health care benefits. Getting started is simple. Create a free account online to help ease your enrollment process. Start your application today
Access mental health services online.
Telehealth: You can connect with VA mental health services through a computer or mobile device in your home or at your nearest VA health facility. To set up telephone or video appointments, Veterans can send their health care team a secure message on My HealtheVet by visiting myhealth.va.gov.
Veteran Training: This self-help portal provides tools to help Veterans overcome everyday challenges in an entirely anonymous environment. Using the tools, Veterans can work on problem-solving, manage their anger, develop parenting skills, and more. The free tools are based on mental health practices that have proven successful with Veterans and their families.
Mobile Apps: Access mental health support wherever you are, whenever you need it. These mobile apps are specifically designed to support you in managing mental health conditions, including depression.
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) aims to help you live with unpleasant thoughts, feelings, and impulses without avoiding them or being controlled by them. In ACT, you are encouraged to commit to actions so that you can live your life by your values, even in the face of these unpleasant experiences.
Vet Centers: Support for Veterans, service members and their families
Vet Centers are small, non-medical counseling centers conveniently located in your community. If you are a Veteran or service member including members of the National Guard and Reserve, you may be eligible to receive individual and group counseling at no cost to you and your family. You can access these services even if you’re not enrolled in VA health care or have a service connection.
Vet Centers offer counseling services for issues including:
- Support for symptoms related to PTSD
- Military Sexual Trauma (MST) counseling
- Family and couples counseling for military transition to civilian life
- Bereavement (grief) counseling
- Employment assessment and referral
- Substance abuse assessment and referral
Call 1-877-927-8387 24/7 to reach the Vet Center Call Center and talk about your military experience or other concerns during your transition from military to civilian life. The team is comprised of Veterans from several eras as well as family members of Veterans.
Resources and support outside of VA
Veterans may obtain support from some government agencies and community organizations outside of VA.
This free service provides expert support to connect military personnel and their families with the best available resources to fit their needs. For support, visit the Military OneSource website or call 800-342-9647 anytime, day or night.
Psychological Health Resource Center
The center works to improve the lives of Veterans, Service members, and their families by advancing excellence in psychological health care, readiness, and prevention.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
This 24/7, 365-day-a-year emergency mental health hotline offers support for people experiencing a mental health crisis.
To reach the hotline:
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
The foundation provides mental health resources for people experiencing thoughts of suicide and offers supportive educational tools for concerned family members, friends, and peers.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
SAMHSA's helpline offers free, confidential treatment referral and information services for individuals and families facing mental health and/or substance use disorders. Support is available 24/7, 365 days a year, in both English and Spanish.
To reach SAMHSA's National Helpline:
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)
NAMI helps millions of Americans build better lives by providing educational programs for families and individuals living with mental health challenges.
Mental Health America
This organization advocates for policies that promote mental health and the rights of people living with mental health challenges. It also provides education and connections to mental health resources.