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How to check yourself into a mental institution

Updated February 21, 2017

If you're having thoughts of hurting yourself or other wise feel out of control, getting help and checking yourself into a mental institution will keep you safe. While in the mental hospital, you'll have time to relax, focus on healing and stabilise. You'll be under medical supervision and all meals will be made for you. Making the decision to go to hospital isn't always easy, but it could save your life.

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  1. Tell a family member or friend you want to go to the mental hospital. Having someone to advocate for you when you're not thinking clearly can help you get the care you need. Ask your friend to go with you to the hospital.

  2. Pack a bag of clothing and toiletries. The hospital will have strict guidelines about what you can bring. While these guidelines vary by hospital, in general leave shoes with shoe laces and anything sharp at home. Bring your identification and any health insurance cards.

  3. Ask your friend to drive you to the hospital. Try to go during the day so you can be evaluated by a psychiatrist. Ask the friend or family member to stay with you to help coordinate your care.

  4. Tell the psychiatrist how you feel. Be honest. Often a psychiatrist will make the decision about rather to admit you or let you go home. The psychiatrist will also develop a treatment plan for you. Ask for your family member to be present to help with the plan.

  5. Stay in the hospital as long as needed. While you're there at your free will, you'll get the most out of your stay by going through with treatment as long as needed.

  6. Warning

    If you feel like harming yourself or someone else, call a suicide hotline or a friend right away. Find professional help.

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About the Author

Kristine Brite worked as a community journalist and public relations specialist before moving onto freelance writing. She graduated with a degree in journalism from Indiana University and has six years of professional writing experience.

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