5 Ways to Access Mental Health Support

Access for Serving Personnel

About Big White Wall

A safe online community of people who are anxious, down or not coping. The ‘wall’ supports and helps each other by sharing what’s troubling them. Our support, guided by trained professionals, available 24/7. Big White Wall is completely anonymous so you can express yourself as you see fit. Professional ‘Wall Guides’ ensure the safety and anonymity of all members.

The Big White Wall Website


If you are a serving person or veteran facing mental health problems. SSAFA is here to help you feel less alone and also point you to more specialised services.

Our experienced volunteers can help you deal with mental health issues. We can’t diagnose your problem or offer a counselling service. We can provide support with everyday things while you concentrate on getting treatment.

SSAFA The Armed Forces Charity

About Combat Stress

At Combat Stress we know that serving your country can take its toll.  Every year some veterans leave the Armed Forces with mental health problems.  Combat Stress are experts in the treatment of Service-related mental health issues. We offer a range of services to provide veterans with the support they need to recover.

Combat Stress 24-hour Helpline

Don’t feel you’re alone. If you serve, or have served your country, as a regular or reservist, our Helpline can provide advice. If you’re a family member or carer worried about a loved one, you can call the Helpline too.

Combat Stress 24-hour Helpline. 0800 138 1619, text: 07537 404 719 helpline@combatstress.org.uk 

Combat Stress Website

In Service Access

Whilst serving accessing treatment still remains the same for everyone. You can contact your MO via your medical centre, speak with your Padre or inform your chain of command. I have included a list below for different services.

  • Royal Navy
  • British Army

The Ministry of Defence recognises mental illness, including Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It is a serious and disabling medical condition. Assessment and treatment is available for service personnel. If you have concerns about your mental health treatment is available.

British Army Website

  • Royal Marines
  • Royal Air Force
  • Reservists

Access for Veterans

Veterans can gain assess from various sources, some of the information appears above. Veterans can access support form The Big White Wall, SSAFA and Combat Stress in a similar way. There are other service and organisations which might be useful.

About Help for Heroes – Hidden Wounds

Our Hidden Wounds service provides free and confidential support to Ex-Service Personnel. This includes their families and the families of those still serving. Those who are living with anxiety, depression, stress, anger. We also help those who wish to change their drinking habits.

Help for Heroes – Hidden Wounds Website

National Health Service

NHS England

The veterans’ mental health transition, intervention and liaison service. We offer a range of treatment and support for those who have discharged from the armed forces. This includes recognising the early signs of mental health problems. Providing access to early treatment and support. As well as therapeutic treatment for complex mental health difficulties and psychological trauma.

The NHS provides dedicated mental health services across England. The services offers a range of treatments and support for veterans.

These services work with a range of organisations. We aim to provide a complete package of care to help patients enjoy a healthy life.

Patients will helped, where appropriate, with employment, reduction in alcohol consumption and housing. We also offer social support to aid transition.

For veterans accessing the services, they must:

  • reside in England
  • have served in the UK armed forces for a full day
  • be registered with a GP practice in England or be willing to register with a GP
  • able to provide their military service number.

NHS England Website

NHS Scotland

NHS Wales

Local Health Board has appointed an experienced clinician as a Veteran Therapist. They have an interest or experience of military (mental) health problems. The therapist will accept referrals from health care staff, GPs, veteran charities. We also accept self-referrals from ex-service personnel.

NHS Wales Website

NHS Northern Ireland

I hope you have found some benefit from 5 Ways to Access Mental Health Support (Armed Forces). Feel free to spread the word and share if you wish. Clearly there is information which needs to updated and included. Please contact me with any relevant updates