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Free, Confidential Help For Those At Risk Of Suicide

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If you or someone you know is at risk or is considering suicide, free and confidential help is available. The most important thing you can do for someone at risk is to get them help.

  • Active-duty personnel of all services, veterans, those in the Army Reserve and National Guard, and their friends and family members can call the national crisis line for the military and veterans at 1-800-273-8255 . It's staffed by mental health professionals, and it's free, confidential and available 24/7. You can also start an online chat from the crisis line website, or a conversation by text at 838255.
  • Marines -- both active and reserve -- and their families can speak to a Marine veteran for any kind of help through the DSTRESSLINE. It's free, anonymous and available 24/7 by calling 1-877-476-7734 or setting up a chat via the website.
  • To access the many resources of the Department of Veterans Affairs, including finding a suicide prevention coordinator near you, click here.
  • To access a portal for active-duty, Guard and reserve troops, click here to get to a range of resources, including online, telephone and face-to-face counseling.
  • To find a therapist, visit the HelpPRO Therapist Finder.
  • To find a support group for suicide survivors, visit the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
To find mental health and substance abuse services and treatment, visit:
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
  • Military Pathways, an anonymous mental health and alcohol education screening program
  • Afterdeployment.org, an all-purpose resource for active-duty personnel, veterans, families (kids and teens, too) and health care providers on issues ranging from post-traumatic stress and anger to those involving work, finances and substance abuse. You can also join a workshop, participate in research, take self-assessments and find additional resources.
  • Other resources:
    • Click here to learn what kind of support is available for homeless veterans.
    • Visit MakeTheConnection.net to meet veterans from your service and find out how they coped with behavioral health issues.
    Mobile apps:
    • Breathe2Relax -- a portable stress management tool to reduce stress and calm the "fight or flight" response
    • T2 Mood Tracker -- a diary to record emotions and behaviors on six pre-loaded scales (PTSD, stress, brain injury, depression, anxiety and general well-being)
    • PTSD Coach -- an app that discusses traumatic stress and how to manage symptoms, and helps users find professional care and crisis support

    This article is part of a special Huffington Post series, "Invisible Casualties," in which we shine a spotlight on suicide-prevention efforts within the military. To see all the articles, blog posts, audio and video, click here.

    If you need help in the U.S. and you're not part of the military, call 1-800-273-8255 for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

    This story appears in a special Labor Day issue of our weekly iPad magazine, Huffington, available Friday, Aug. 30 in the iTunes App store.