Back to Top Skip to main content Skip to sub-navigation

Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Resources Provide Help: You Are Not Alone

Image of Military personnel posing for a picture. Spc. Andrea Stevenson, a Baltimore, Maryland native and Army food service specialist assigned t o115th Quartermaster Field Feeding Company, 4th Division Sustainment Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, poses for a photo, March 11, 2022, at the Wolf Dinning Facility, Fort Carson, Colorado. On Feb. 28, Stevenson's best friend in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, called to say she was going to commit suicide. Due to her quick reaction, Stevenson was able to save the life of her close friend. (U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Joshua Zayas).

Recommended Content:

Mental Health: Seeking Care with TRICARE | Suicide Prevention | Suicide Prevention | Psychological Fitness

Life is full of ups and downs. But sometimes life events—financial strain, relationships, isolation, emotional or sexual abuse, stress, and misuse or abuse of alcohol or drugs—can lead to depression, anxiety, and thoughts of suicide for some. It’s important to remember that you are not alone. If you or a loved one need immediate help, you can call the Military Crisis Line (or Veterans Crisis Line) at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) and choose option 1. Send a text to 838255. Or start a chat online. The crisis line is free and available 24/7 to help you and connect you with the resources you need.

MentalHealth.gov defines mental health this way: “Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood.”

However, life’s challenges can affect how we think, feel, and act. And our mental health may also be affected.

Mental health disorders, such as depression and anxiety, may interfere with your life and overall physical health. You can have symptoms that are mild and brief or more serious and persistent.

According to Dr. Krystyna Bienia, clinical psychologist and senior policy analyst at the Defense Health Agency, mental health disorders are treatable, and recovery is possible.

“TRICARE beneficiaries are urged to seek help as soon as they can when they notice something doesn’t feel right, or symptoms begin to present themselves,” Dr. Bienia said. “Early intervention is key, but help at any point is best. It’s okay to not be okay. But be sure to ask for help.”

What are some early signs of possible mental health problems that are interfering with your (or a loved one’s) daily routine?

  • Eating or sleeping too much or too little.
  • Pulling away from people and usual activities.
  • Having trouble concentrating.
  • Having low or no energy. 
  • Feeling numb or like nothing matters. 
  • Having unexplained aches and pains.
  • Feeling helpless or hopeless. 
  • Smoking or drinking more than usual. 

Do you think you or a family member could benefit from mental health services? TRICARE provides a number of resources. If you need help finding a provider, including a mental health provider, you can use the Find a Doctor tool. You can also reach out to your primary care provider or your TRICARE regional contractor.

You don’t need a referral or pre-authorization for any outpatient mental health (except for psychoanalysis) and substance use disorder care. This includes services like individual or family therapy. For example, if you have TRICARE Prime, you don’t need a referral to see a network provider for office-based outpatient mental health services. If you have TRICARE Select, you can see any TRICARE-authorized provider. But you’ll lower your out-of-pocket costs if you choose to see a network provider.

If you have TRICARE For Life, Medicare is the primary payer for your mental health services. You only need a referral or pre-authorization from TRICARE if your Medicare benefits are exhausted.

Are you an active duty service member? You should first seek nonemergency mental health services at your military hospital or clinic. You need to get a referral and pre-authorization for all civilian mental health services. You can go to the TRICARE website to learn more.

Keep in mind, you don’t need a referral or pre-authorization for emergency care. If you think you have a mental health emergency, call 911 or your local emergency number. Or go to the nearest emergency room. You need immediate help if you’re experiencing any of these signs:

  • Thinking about hurting or killing yourself.
  • Looking for ways to hurt yourself.
  • Talking about death, dying, or suicide.
  • Self-destructive behavior, such as drug abuse or risky use of weapons.

Non Emergency Mental Health Services

Depending on your needs and diagnosis, many treatment levels may be available to you. How do you get nonemergency mental health services? It depends on the level of care you need, your health plan, and your sponsor status. Some nonemergency mental health services TRICARE covers are:

Did you know telemental health services are also a part of your TRICARE benefit? With your computer, or phone, you can connect securely with your provider. Go to the TRICARE website to for more on these mental health resources.

Additional Services

The Military Health System has additional mental health resources that are available 24/7:

You also may be interested in...

Virtual Hope Box App

Fact Sheet
1/19/2022

The Virtual Hope Box is a smartphone application designed for patients and their behavioral health providers as an accessory to treatment. The VHB contains simple tools to help patients with coping, relaxation, distraction and positive thinking.

Recommended Content:

Solution Delivery Division | Psychological Fitness

Six Immediate Health Benefits You Will See If You Lose a Little Weight

Article
1/14/2022
A soldier assigned to the 256th Combat Support Hospital, Twinsburg, Ohio, drinks water from a gallon-sized jug during Combat Support Training Exercise 18-03 at Fort McCoy, Wisconsin, March 26, 2018. The 256th CSH implemented a goal setting competition, dubbed Dandy Camp, to teach and encourage soldiers to monitor their total carbohydrate intake during the field exercise. The overall goal of Dandy Camp is to educate soldiers about healthy eating choices and encourage soldiers to set and meet goals for themselves.

Losing even a little weight now can have a major impact on your health and quality of life. This long list of benefits might help motivate you to adjust your habits to achieve a happier, healthier lifestyle.

Recommended Content:

Physical Fitness | Women's Health | Heart Health | Nutritional Fitness | Psychological Fitness | Sleep

Talking Seasonal Affective Disorder

Article Around MHS
1/4/2022
Military personnel staring out of the window

Holiday blues, seasonal depression, and other terms have been used to describe what is now known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), and more often than not, many factors play a role on an individual’s ability to be affected by this disorder each year around the holidays.

Recommended Content:

Depression | Psychological Fitness

Three Free Holiday Gifts That Boost Well-Being

Article
12/14/2021
Image of soldier holding a letter.

Gift giving is a fun and meaningful part of many cultures during the holidays. Try giving 3 “different” gifts to boost the well-being of the recipient and improve your well-being too. Best of all? They’re 100% free!

Recommended Content:

Psychological Fitness | Stress

Ask the Doc: How Do I Get Rid of the 'Dark Cloud' Over My Holidays?

Article
12/13/2021
A mask hanging on a Christmas tree

Doc talks to Jane Olien, a licensed clinical social worker assigned to Behavioral Health Clinical Operations, part of the DHA’s Medical Affairs/Clinical Support Division, in San Antonio, Texas, about combatting feelings of depression around the holidays.

Recommended Content:

Psychological Fitness | Total Force Fitness | Ask The Doc

Why Less Sunlight in the Wintertime Can Put You at Risk of Depression

Article
12/7/2021
Airman in winter gear carry deployment gear at Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson, Alaska in preparation for Operation Polar Force exercise

Seasonal Affective Disorder signs and treatments

Recommended Content:

Psychological Fitness

People First priority for BJACH Behavioral Health Suicide Prevention Program

Article Around MHS
12/1/2021
Chuck Satterfield and Staff Sgt. Lori Fury hosting a training

Behavioral health professionals from Bayne-Jones Army Community Hospital conducted leadership development training with the 519th Military Police Battalion at the Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk, Louisiana in mid-November.

Recommended Content:

Psychological Fitness | Suicide Prevention | Suicide Prevention

Mental Stress is like a ‘Check Engine Light’ Flashing–Don’t Ignore It

Article
11/29/2021
Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Jason David talks about his  journey of recovery through the Air Force Wounded Warrior Program during a video conversation with Defense Health Agency Command Sgt. Major Michael Gragg.

Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Jason David speaks about his own journey of recovery through the Air Force Wounded Warrior Program.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Warrior Care | Warrior Care – A Virtual Show of Strength | Psychological Fitness

Healing Is An Art, Art is Healing: Exhibit Highlights the Healing Power of Art

Article Around MHS
11/10/2021
Service members look at art included in the Healing Arts Exhibit on display throughout November at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

Healing is an art, and art is healing was the sentiments shared among those who attended the opening ceremony for the 18th Annual Healing Arts Exhibit at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Oct. 27.

Recommended Content:

Psychological Fitness

Following Report, DOD to Redouble Suicide Prevention Efforts

Article Around MHS
10/5/2021
A person helps another person up.

Following a recent report about suicide, the DOD redouble efforts to prevent suicides.

Recommended Content:

Suicide Prevention | Suicide Prevention

Back from the Brink: One Marine's Recovery from Suicidal Thoughts

Article
9/29/2021
Portrait photo of John Peck

After suffering a TBI in Iraq and losing all four limbs in Afghanistan, Marine Sgt. John Peck talks about his own experience and the differences in the ways in which individuals deal with traumatic life events.

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury | Suicide Prevention | Suicide Prevention | Mental Health is Health Care

MHS and MOS Town Hall To Your Health: Suicide Awareness and Prevention

Article
9/28/2021
Headshot of Dr. Tim Hoyt

MHS and Military One Source presents a discussion with Dr. Tim Hoyt about Suicide Awareness and Prevention.

Recommended Content:

Suicide Prevention | Mental Health: Seeking Care with TRICARE | Suicide Prevention

“Connect to Protect” campaign promotes togetherness in preventing suicides

Article Around MHS
9/27/2021
September is Suicide Prevention Month

Suicide is a public health issue that affects communities across the country, and Suicide Prevention Month offers an opportunity to further people’s understanding of this complex issue.

Recommended Content:

Suicide Prevention | Pain Management Toolkit

Storytellers Narratives on mental health

Article Around MHS
9/27/2021
Participants in the Storytellers event standing side by side wearing face masks

Three storytellers shared their experiences with overcoming adversity

Recommended Content:

Mental Health: Seeking Care with TRICARE

You Are Not Alone - Mental Health Care is Not One-Size-Fits-All

Article
9/21/2021
Soldier with head in hand.

There are many options for support available to those who are having thoughts of suicide and those around them.

Recommended Content:

Psychological Health Resource Center | 24/7 | Suicide Prevention | Suicide Prevention | Mental Health is Health Care
<< < 1 2 3 4 5  ... > >> 
Showing results 46 - 60 Page 4 of 11
Refine your search
Last Updated: August 04, 2022

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.