This guide explains what mental health crisis services are available, how they can help and when to access them. It also explains how you can plan for a crisis. If you're feeling in crisis right now, see our emergency advice.
Crisis houses might be run by the NHS, independent organisations such as charities, or both of these together – so they're often free to use. If you find a private crisis house you want to access, it's best to check if there are any costs involved.
To use a crisis house, you'll usually need to be referred by a mental health professional, although some let you refer yourself. The staff will also need to assess you, to make sure it's the right place to help you.
When assessing you, they might consider:
"Crisis house support [was] relatively helpful, and was there 24/7. Unfortunately [where I went] you can only stop 14 days."
We've listed some details of crisis houses and sanctuaries. Unfortunately there are a very limited number around England and Wales, and there might not be one near you – but this isn't an exhaustive list and you may be able to find others we haven't included.
This information was published in October 2018. We will revise it in 2021.
References are available on request. If you would like to reproduce any of this information, see our page on permissions and licensing.