Mental Health Crisis!

A guide to Crisis Response in Tennessee For Peers and Families

Mental Health Crisis!

A guide to Crisis Response in Tennessee For Peers and Families



If you don’t feel safe,
CALL 911

Call 911 if high risk, for police, crisis response, or emergency medical (EMT).
Risk is high when weapons are involved or there is serious risk of physical harm to self or others.


This information contained in this guide is for education only. It is not a complete statement of the law and should not be relied upon for legal advice.

The information contained in this guide is based on federal and Tennessee law. The law may change making this information inaccurate. For specific legal questions, please consult an attorney.


When a person’s mental health condition leads to threats or action that may harm themselves or others; or gets in the way of self-care to the point that safety is at risk.

Examples of Mental Health Crises:

I haven’t slept in three nights. Sounds are too loud, and colors are too bright. I can’t remember taking my medications. Should I take them now? I’ll call my psychiatrist.

Empty pill bottles are strewn all over. He’s scared. After her son took his life, she seemed hopeless. He went to her place when she did not call for their weekly check-in. How long has she been lying on the couch? Can her life be saved? He calls 911.

The voices tell me to burn my clothes to clean my soul. I hide my thoughts because they will kill me if anyone finds out. I’m sitting on the floor rocking back and forth to stop the voices. They want to kill me. My mom says I’m ill, but I don’t know.  She has called Crisis.

Something is terribly wrong. He’s been locked in his room for a week, shouting at all hours of the day and night. Now he says she is siding with forces that want to destroy him. She calls the Crisis Line.

I couldn’t stand this pain anymore. Every day I woke up and wondered why I was alive. It seemed like everyone would be better off without me.  So, I took the whole bottle of pills but now I don’t want to die. My dad has called 911.

His adult daughter called in the middle of the night and wasn’t making sense. He worries that she has stopped taking her medications. He calls her psychiatrist.

Call 1-855-274-7471 or Text "TN" to 741-741

For the Tennessee Statewide Crisis Line, a free 24/7 mental health crisis service available across Tennessee.

OR, call the usual mental health provider.

The mental health provider will know the person in crisis and their treatment plan.
They can help the person feel better and get them into crisis care if needed.