Healthdirect Free Australian health advice you can count on.

Medical problem? Call 1800 022 222. If you need urgent medical help, call triple zero immediately

healthdirect Australia is a free service where you can talk to a nurse or doctor who can help you know what to do.

beginning of content

Mental health resources for young adults

3-minute read

Feeling stressed? Is something getting you down? Many young adults between the ages of 18 and 25 years struggle with mental health issues - about their home life, work or study, money or relationships.

If you’re worried about your mental health, it’s best not to ignore the problem. Like a physical illness, a mental health issue can be treated, and the sooner you get help, the better.

What is mental health and why is it important?

The term ‘mental health’ refers to your state of mind. If your mental health is fine, you tend to feel confident and are able to deal with life and its challenges. On the other hand, if your mental health is not so good, life can seem a lot harder than it should be.

Good mental health is important. This is not just so you can get through the day, but so you can build positive relationships with others, and enjoy and appreciate life.

Most people experience a mental health issue at some point in their life. But if things don't seem to get better, it could be a sign of a mental illness.

Mental illnesses, such as depression, anxiety, personality disorders and eating disorders, have a big impact on how you think, feel and behave, and can make it difficult to cope with day-to-day life.

Just like other illnesses, mental illnesses need to be managed or treated to get better. So, if you think you could have a mental health issue, maybe you should consider getting help (see ‘Where to get help’ below).

Young adults and common mental health issues

Mental health issues are common. For example, at some point you may:

If you’re having a tough time with these, or any other issues, it doesn’t necessarily mean your mental health is in danger. But it’s worth talking to someone to get some advice.

If you find yourself thinking about self-harm or suicide, it’s definitely time to get help – see ‘Where to get help’ below.

How can I improve my mental health and wellbeing?

There are lots of things you can do to get yourself into a better head space and improve your overall sense of wellbeing. Here are a few suggestions:

  • learn more about your issue, and what can be done about it
  • talk to your friends and family
  • eat well and get enough sleep
  • get some regular exercise
  • make time to relax and have some fun
  • if you’re using drugs or alcohol, slow down

Where to get help

If you need someone to talk to, or want to find out more, these organisations can help you:

You can also ask your doctor or a mental health professional for advice, either for yourself or if you are caring for a young adult with mental health issues.

Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.

Last reviewed: March 2018

Need more information?

These trusted information partners have more on this topic.

Top results

Supporting young adults | Head to Health

Some of life's biggest changes take place between the ages of 18 and 25, and there are many things that can impact on a young adult’s mental health and wellbeing.

Read more on Head to Health website

Supporting yourself - young adults | Head to Health

Between the ages of 18 and 25, we experience some big changes in our lives. As responsibilities increase, many things can impact on our mental health, so it's important to look after our wellbeing.

Read more on Head to Health website

Tips To Keep Good Mental Health - for Young People | headspace

Good mental health and wellbeing allows you to cope with the changes and challenges life throws at you and helps you to live your life in a positive and meaningful way. Visit headspace to discover some useful tips on how to keep a good mental health.

Read more on headspace website

MindSpot Mood Mechanic Course to manage anxiety and depression - MindSpot Clinic

The MindSpot Mood Mechanic Course can help young adults better manage anxiety, stress, worry, depression and low mood.

Read more on MindSpot Clinic website

Talking to teenagers

Information and advice on talking to teenagers about your mental illness or mental health problem.

Read more on COPMI – Children of Parents with a Mental Illness website

What to do after someone dies - Better Health Channel

When someone dies, it will help you to have a written plan of what you need to do including who you need to contact.

Read more on Better Health Channel website

Emotions Arthritis Australia

Arthritis is a chronic health condition that can affect your physical health and your mental wellbeing

Read more on Arthritis Australia website

Depression | Mental Health Online

We all feel sad from time to time. It’s normal to feel sad in certain situations, such as when someone we know dies or is seriously ill, or if we are having relationship difficulties or troubles at work.

Read more on Mental Health Online website

Depression - Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health

Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health is the world’s leading research and knowledge translation organisation focusing on mental ill-health in young people.

Read more on Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health website

Family Violence | Children and Youth Services

DHHS Family Violence Counselling and Support Service offer a specialised response to assist children, young people and adults affected by family violence

Read more on Tasmanian Department of Health and Human Services website

Healthdirect 24hr 7 days a week hotline

24 hour health advice you can count on

1800 022 222

Government Accredited with over 140 information partners

We are a government-funded service, providing quality, approved health information and advice

Australian Government, health department logo ACT Government logo New South Wales government, health department logo Northen Territory Government logo Government of South Australia, health department logo Tasmanian government logo Government of Western Australia, health department logo