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NHS Kernow’s website closed on 30 June 2022. Visit the NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Integrated Care Board website for information about our health and care services.

Feeling suicidal

If you need help for a mental health crisis, emergency or breakdown, or if you are worried about someone else, you should get immediate expert advice and assessment.
It is important to know that support is available, even if services seem busy at the moment because of COVID-19. We can offer video appointments.

If you have already been given a crisis line number to use in an emergency, it’s best to call it.

How to help yourself

  • Visit the emergency department if you are concerned that you can’t keep yourself safe.
  • Call 999 if you are unable to visit the emergency department and you have harmed yourself.
  • Talk to your GP, tell the receptionist about how you feel so they can make the GP aware as soon as possible
  • Talk to someone who can understand such as Samaritans, you can call them free from a mobile or landline on 116 123
  • Make a safety plan.

Talk to someone who can help

NHS 24/7 helpline

To talk to someone about your mental wellbeing you can call the 24/7 NHS mental health telephone support helpline on 0800 038 5300 for advice and triage. Support is available to anyone, regardless of age, all day every day. If you or someone you know feels they need to access urgent mental health support, they will listen to you and assess how best to help.


Call the Samaritans free from your landline or mobile 24/7 365 days a year on 116 123.

Support Matters Cornwall

This service operates from 5pm to 9am on weekdays and 24-hours a day at weekends and bank holidays. The service is open to all patients (aged 16 or older) under the care of Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust’s mental health services. Support can be delivered over the telephone, via text, email or web chat. Call free on 0800 001 4330.

Support services

The campaign against living miserably (CALM) is specifically for men. The service is open 7 days a week, from 5pm to midnight.

Papyrus is a service for people under 35. Call 0800 068 4141 or text 07786 209697. Monday to Friday 10am to 5pm. Evenings 7pm to 10pm. Weekends 2pm to 5pm.

SHOUT has a 24/7 text service for anyone who is in a crisis. Text 85258.

How to help someone who is feeling suicidal

If you are concerned that someone is feeling suicidal, they have already made an attempt at suicide, or they have told you that they are intending to end their life and they are in immediate danger then you should call 999.

If someone has said that they have thoughts of suicide and that they do not know what they want to do, then you should support them to call their GP, and tell the receptionist the situation.

The Staying Safe website has instant online access to help you talk to someone, and the best ways to help them. It is important that the person you are talking to feels listened to, and that someone cares about them.

Have you or someone else been affected by suicide?

Being bereaved by suicide can have an impact on loved ones left behind.

In Cornwall we have a dedicated service which can support friends and family of someone who has died by suicide. The Outlook South West suicide liaison service provides support through trained professionals with specialist skills. If you, or someone you know, would like to access this free service you can call them direct on 01208 871905. Referrals can also be made by your GP or a health professional.

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