What are the Different Types of Crisis Intervention Services?

Crisis intervention services cover an array of emergency social and mental health supports that are usually accessible 24 hours a day. These services are typically designed to offer immediate and intensive assistance to people in extreme emotional or mental distress. This aid may come in the form of telephone hotlines, support groups, shelters, transitional housing, mental health and addictions counseling, education, advocacy, or mobile teams of professionals that can travel directly to the site of the person in crisis. The exact types of services available vary from location to location.

Issues relating to mental health crises, suicidal ideation, addiction intervention, rape, and domestic violence victims frequently have services that are tailored to meet specific needs. Mental health professionals and social workers tend to be at the forefront of providing these crisis intervention services. The primary concern of any crisis worker is to ascertain that the person having the emergency is safe. If a professional determines that the situation is serious enough that the person needs psychiatric hospitalization, the interventionist will often assist with the admission process to an appropriate facility.

Mental health issues are perhaps most commonly associated with the need for crisis intervention services, but several other issues also have emergency resources available. Many communities have systems in place to help victims of violence find appropriate counseling, support groups, or shelter. Some areas also offer intervention services related to court or medical advocacy.

Crisis intervention services are sometimes accessed through other emergency services, such as hospitals and local law enforcement. Medical staff will often call crisis intervention workers to help coordinate aftercare support services for people who come in with mental, emotional, or addiction problems. Law enforcement officials may also refer victims of physical or sexual abuse to the appropriate services.

Telephone hotlines are often the point of first contact between the person in trouble and crisis intervention services. These lines of communication tend to be manned by either professional counselors or trained volunteers who will offer support, information, and follow-up services to the caller. Some international organizations, such as Alcoholics Anonymous, have crisis services available by telephone and on the Internet.

Crisis interventions services are available for a wide range of situations. Information about what services are available in a given location can usually be obtained from the local mental health or social services centers. These resources may also be located on the Internet, or by contacting a local hospital.

You might also Like


Discuss this Article

Post 3

Where can I find crisis intervention training? I think it would be a very rewarding job to help people during times of crisis. With the increase in disasters and the current economic climate, I would assume that there is a need for crisis prevention. I would appreciate any information that anyone can provide.

Post 2

@GiraffeEars- That seems like an interesting service that your town offered. What types of activities did you offer to the children? I would like to see something like that in my community. Our kids have so little to do that they become bored and commit petty crimes.

I live in a rural part of the state, and most of the teens in my community come from lower middle class families. The town is not rich by any means so there is a lack of outdoor spaces and services that cater to youths. In addition, all the parents I know are working parents who have little time to be home with their kids, or drive them to activities in the larger town about 20 miles away. I would love to see something like that in the town that I live in. Maybe I should write to my town's family counseling services to see if they would have any interest.

Post 1

I used to work for a teen center and we offered crisis intervention services for at risk youth. The teen center was actually funded by a family crisis intervention service, and almost instantly became a success. The center offered teens a safe place to hang out that was free of the normal peer pressures related to drugs, sex, and violence.

Initially, the teen center brought a lot of criticism from the older and more conservative populations because they saw the center as a place where the community’s worst kids were allowed to hang out. The police were not very receptive of the center, even though we maintained a very close and open relationship with the department.

After the first year

, this began to change. There were fewer arrests for fighting and drugs. There were fewer young people loitering in places they were not supposed to. The children who attended the center were also more engaged in regular community service and civic activities. It has been four years since I started at the center, and some of the original students are even volunteering at the center, inspiring a second generation to find their potential.

Post your comments

Post Anonymously


forgot password?