Young Adults – Mental Health and Substance Use

Wellness: Taking care of your body, mind and soul at home and work

Everyone feels anxious and stressed from time to time. Let’s face it – launching yourself is stressful. Things happen that can leave you feeling lonely, overwhelmed and hopeless. But there’s always hope and actions you can take to feel better. You can learn ways to live with discomfort and dis-ease.

As a young adult you’ll have situations that are opportunities for growth and challenges that your resilience will carry you through. Then there will be times when you need to develop new coping skills. There are many healthy ways to manage your stress, and some take practice. Many people feel less stressed, are more focused, sleep better and feel less anxious when they get into a regular routine of stress management. Find what’s right for you— take time to explore a variety of different things suggested in the resources below. Become the best you can be even during difficult times.

General resources for coping, self-care and mental health

The Upper Room in Derry offers direct programming for young adults to help young adults learn coping strategies, build resilience, and move forward on their journey.

Young adults can find resources in their region by checking out what their local young adult strategies coordinator is up to!

The websites Half of Us, and Seize the Awkward offer friendly tips and resources to help you feel better or help a friend with things like:

  • How to talk to a friend if you are concerned
  • How to take a healthy break
  • How to take care of your mental health or help a friend who’s struggling
  • How to be grateful and appreciative

Your Life Your Voice – call, text or email for professional help dealing with any life situation like feelings, school, family, or mental health.  Tips and tools for developing positive coping strategies.

The Happiness Lab – Podcast series hosted by Dr. Laurie Santos, Yale professor, challenges all your assumptions about what makes a happy life. Special bonus episodes on surviving and coping with COVID.

Free Mindfulness – free guided meditation exercises.

Do Yoga with Me – free guided meditation, visualizations and relaxations.

Meditation Information – general information about the benefits of meditation.

BIPOC Meditation Resources – Resources, programs and podcast series for individuals who identify as Black, Indigenous, and People of Color.

SHINE – Inclusive wellness, self-care and mental health resources for BIPOC individuals.

Therapy for Black Girls – Podcast series by Dr. Joy Harden Bradford addressing mental health, personal development and wellness.

To learn more about stress and anxiety in general, read these articles for young adults: Understanding Stress and Anxiety and Balancing Stress

Resources for addressing mental health issues

NAMI NH – The NH office of  the National Alliance on Mental Illness provides support, education and advocacy for people affected by mental illness and suicide. They host support groups too.

Mental Health First Aid – Learn how to help a youth, teen or adult cope with a developing mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. The 8-hour training helps you identify, understand, and respond to signs of mental illnesses and substance use disorders.

Community Mental Health Centers – There is a community mental health center in every county that offers affordable, confidential counseling services. Many of them have a mobile crisis response team that is available to meet with people while they are having a mental health emergency rather than going to the emergency room. 

You do not leave your mental health at the door when you go to work—sometimes life gets in the way. Finding ways to regulate your emotions at work and manage your stress is good for you and your employer.

Resources for addressing substance misuse concerns

Your doctor can also treat or link you to behavioral health services for mental health or substance use issues. Today, many practices are taking a more integrated approach with mental health care by providing counseling and medications (if needed) for depression, anxiety, ADHD, bipolar disorder and substance use disorder during an office visit. If you need to find a doctor first, there are several community health centers (CHC) in NH that offer primary care, mental health care and some even have oral health clinics. If you need health insurance, they will help you apply.

Rethinking Drinking – Do you enjoy a drink now and again, but you are not sure if your drinking is a problem? Have you wondered how much alcohol is too much? This is a great website to explore your drinking habits and how they fit into your life and affect your work, relationships and motivation.   

Binge Free 603 – NH young people share their personal experiences and reasons to avoid drinking.  There are also resources for the sober curious.  

Today Is For Me – A health campaign designed specifically for women seeking information on staying healthy before, during and after pregnancy. By sharing science-based information about alcohol and marijuana use, this campaign provides information on how these substances affect your body, mind and health and the potential impact on your baby. 

The Doorway – The Doorway NH is a statewide service that supports any NH resident, of any age, with a substance or alcohol concern or issue. To access the service anywhere in NH, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, call 2-1-1 or call 1-866-444-4211. They will connect you to the local Doorway program in your area.

NH Alcohol and Drug Treatment Locator -This is a searchable database with treatment agencies and individual practitioners offering substance use disorder services, including evaluation (this is the first step to determine level of treatment needed), withdrawal management (detoxification), outpatient counseling, residential treatment, recovery supports and other types of services.

Speaking of health insurance, finding affordable health insurance is a big decision for young adults. Fortunately, if your parents have coverage, you can stay on their plan until you are 26 years old. Depending on your income and your employment status, you can apply for low-cost insurance at Healthcare.gov or one of the NH Medicaid plans at NH Easy. Both offer chat features if you run into any problems. 

QuitNow-NH – Quitting smoking is one of the best things you can do for your current and future health. NH residents get free, confidential and convenient telephone coaching services to quit any form of tobacco. Highly trained Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialists help callers set small achievable goals. You may be eligible for free nicotine replacement medications.

AskPETRA – If you live in the North Country, AskPETRA is available to help you find all the resources you need. In addition to general factsheets and information on their website, you can connect directly with a community health worker/recovery coach between the hours of 8:00am and 4:30pm, Monday – Friday.  All services are free and confidential.

Resources for dealing with family issues

Welcome Families NH – Welcome Families NH is a one-stop resource that helps you and your young children find what you need, when you need it.

Parent Information Center – Support and answers for all your questions about services for children with disabilities and special healthcare needs. 

NH Community Health Association – Find a counselor for your family or child at one of many locations around NH.

Child Care Aware – Find quality, licensed child care provider and other resources.

Family Resource Centers – Family Resources Centers help strengthen and support families to take on the challenges of raising their children. They provide family support, financial services and community connection.  

Home Visiting Services – Whether you are pregnant or already have a new baby at  home, Home Visiting services help you with the support you want, when you want it. Many different types of services are available to guide and assist parents-to-be and parents of young children in the early stages of raising a family.

New Hampshire Family Voices – Provides free, confidential services to families and professionals caring for children with chronic conditions and/or disabilities.

Welcoming NH – Resources to help immigrants and those who support them find legal, financial, and families services to successfully integrate into NH communities.

Resources for dealing with stress at work

Workplace Resiliency Training – Work is a major source of stress whether you are a first responder, restaurant worker or teacher. This training is a free work-place based training that helps identify stressors, learn healthier coping skills, and reduce stress and high risk behaviors.

Thriving Through Stress – is a virtual version of a section of Resiliency and Thriving presentation  developed to address the challenges of meeting during Covid-19. 

Recovery Friendly Workplace – This is an initiative of Governor Sununnu that promotes individual wellness for Granite Staters by empowering workplaces to provide support for people recovering from substance use disorder. You can support this effort by suggesting that your workplace become a recovery friendly site.

Employee Assistance Programs – Many worksites offer employee assistance programs to help their employees handle issues that impact their health and well-being like work-life balance, loss and grief, divorce, and debt. Ask your human resource department to see if your worksite offers an employee assistance program.  

Not sure what you want to do next, but feeling restless?

  Watch and listen to these Ted Talks and Interviews:

“Belonging” with Brené Brown

Technology: Connected but Alone?” by Sherry Turkle

“The Power of Vulnerability” by Brené Brown

“Depression: The Secret We Share” by Andrew Solomon

“How to Make Stress Your Friend” by Kelly McGonigal

On Being  – Podcast series with Krista Tippett and guests exploring big questions of meaning — spiritual inquiry, science, social healing, and the arts.

Living, learning, and thriving in NH

State, local, non profit and community organizations have opportunities and resources to offer to support you in achieving your goals. From taking care of your physical and mental health to buying your first home, you have support. Explore these three areas for resources to help support the unique challenges facing young adults.

seated young woman lost in thought

Finances

You want to explore interests in education and work, but that can feel hard to do when you are worried about the cost of education and choosing a job that will pay the bills and the rent.
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Connection

You are not alone in feeling alone. Discover resources for connection to the community and social support; to appreciate the natural environment and activities beyond; and to find your political voice.
young woman wearing mental health matters T-shirt

Mental Health and Substance Use

Everyone feels anxious and stressed from time to time. But there’s always hope and actions you can take to feel better. Find young adult resources for coping, self-care and mental health.
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