fb-trackingSkip to main content

Mental health

Your mental health and wellbeing is just as important as your physical health and wellbeing.

Where to go for mental health help

If you think you need help, your first point of contact will nearly always be your GP.

GPs aren't just there for your physical health - they also have experience in helping people with mental health problems and can refer you to specialist services.

If you don't have a GP, register with one:

Find a GP near you

 If you need to talk to someone urgently, you can call:

  • NHS 111
  • SANE: 0845 767 8000 (6pm to 11pm, every day)
  • Samaritans: 0845 790 9090

Information on how to access mental health services on the NHS website.

Community Mental Health Services

Mental health difficulties can make day to day living hard and affect your relationships and your ability to hold down a job. There are a range of Community Mental Health Services available which all aim to help you recover and achieve the things that are important to you.

We work together with the North East London NHS Foundation Trust (NELFT) to provide a range of different services which provide different types of help.

Mental health difficulties can affect anyone at any time in their lives. They are very common and it's important not to be embarrassed about seeking help. Some people have short term issues when they are dealing with difficult events like divorce or losing a job. Other people develop longer term mental health difficulties, or mental illness.

If you are dealing with a mental illness, the Community Mental Health Services aim to help by:

  • helping you identify and diagnose the problem
  • helping you to feel safe
  • offering you a range of treatment options
  • helping with your recovery
  • getting you involved in social activities
  • helping you to feel more independent

Community Mental Health Services are made up of social workers, community mental health nurses, occupational therapists, psychologists, psychiatrists and support staff.

You can find information, support and services on the NELFT website.

Barking and Dagenham access and assessment team (BDAAT)

BDAAT is the assessment service for adults aged 18 to 65 that need to access community mental health services in Barking and Dagenham.

They provide an initial mental health assessment. Once assessed they will refer or signpost you to other mental health services or organisations or offer brief intervention for a time limited period.

If needed, they offer a:

  • full assessment of mental health and social care needs
  • access to a psychiatrist talking therapies and other psychological
  • help advice and information
  • crisis intervention
  • psychiatric medication review
  • and if appropriate self-guided support with social problems recovery and wellbeing approaches

We also provide:

  • a single telephone number for anyone enquiring about mental health services in Barking and Dagenham
  • urgent mental health assessment where needed and management of referrals to other specialist mental health services.

The team is made up of psychiatrists, community mental health nurses, mental health social workers, support time and recovery workers, occupational therapists.


Barking Community Hospital, Upney Lane, Barking, IG11 9LX
0300 555 1038
Switchboard: 0300 555 1200 
Fax: 0844 931 0133
Website: NHS - Barking Access and Assessment Team
Email: mhi.cas@nhs.net

Community Mental Health Team for Older People (65+ yrs) 
0300 555 1016
Switchboard: 0300 555 1200 

If you need advice and information about adult social care, you can call our Adult Intake and Access Team on 020 8227 2915.

Urgent - I need help now

Where to go if you feel you need urgent help with a mental health issue.

Your doctor

Your first stop should be your doctor. They can usually see you at quite short notice if you explain that the situation is urgent. They know your medical history and can tell you where to go to get the help you need.

Emergency duty team (EDT)  

The north east London adult emergency duty team (EDT) provides an emergency social care service outside of normal office hours. It covers Barking and Dagenham, Havering, Redbridge and Waltham Forest. The service is designed to deal only with emergency situations that cannot wait until the next working day.

Members of the public and health and social care professionals can contact the team if a carer or a vulnerable adult is in urgent need or requires protection from harm. A vulnerable adult is a person of 18 years or over with a social care need. This can include people with mental health problems, physical or learning disabilities or older people. The service includes but is not restricted to the provision of Mental Health Act assessments by an approved mental health professional.

For more information on the Emergency Duty Team (EDT) visit the NELFT website.

Mental health direct

If you currently receive a service from a team at NELFT, such as a local community mental health team or a psychiatrist, then make contact with them as soon as you can. It may be helpful to refer to your care plan, which should have details of who to contact in an emergency.

If it is out of office hours or you don’t know who to contact, you should call NELFT Mental health direct.

If you live in Barking and Dagenham, Havering, Redbridge or Waltham Forest, you can call for mental health help and advice anytime of the day or night.

We can arrange for you to speak with a mental health professional. We can also advise you about what service to contact to get the support you need.

Calls from a BT landline are the cost of a local call. Calls from other landlines and mobile providers will vary and may cost more.

Patient information

Contact our service in Barking and Dagenham, Havering, Redbridge and Waltham Forest
NELFT Mental Health Direct
0300 555 1000 (Open to callers based in the 4 London boroughs above for 24 hours a day, 365 days a year)
More information on the Mental Health Direct website.

The Samaritans

The Samaritans are a charity who support anyone who is experiencing distress, despair, or suicidal thoughts. They can give you confidential, non-judgemental emotional support, 24 hours a day.


Address: Freepost RSRB-KKBY-CYJK, Chris, P.O. Box 90 90, Stirling, FK8 2SA
Phone: 116 123 (UK) Free phone line
Website: Samaritans
Email: jo@samaritans.org


Mind is the leading mental health charity for England and Wales. They provide support and advice, and work to make sure people with mental health difficulties are treated fairly and with respect. As well as being a national charity, they have local branches all over England and Wales to provide support where you need it.

01708 57 040 (local) or 0300 123 3393 (national)

Website: Mind Havering
Email: reach.us@haveringmind.org.uk 

Big White Wall

Big White Wall (BWW) is a digital mental health and wellbeing service that has been commissioned by Barking and Dagenham Council, and is designated a High Impact Innovation by the NHS. It has no waiting lists and is available 24/7. Big White Wall is professionally staffed at all times, providing help and support to its members at whatever time that suits them.

Barking and Dagenham residents can join BWW simply by entering their postcode on the Big White Wall website.

As an anonymous service, BWW removes the barrier of stigma, helping people who may not normally seek help for their mental health issues to get the support they need. BWW supports many people who are unable, for whatever reason, to find support elsewhere, and helping them find their voice.

73% share something for the first time on BWW. 95% of members report feeling better as a result of using BWW.

Adult Social Care

If you need to contact us urgently outside of normal working hours you can call our emergency social work team. You can explain your situation to us and we will decide how to deal with it and help you.

Getting in touch

Out of Hours Emergency Social Work Duty team
020 8594 8356

Therapy and counselling

If you want to try a talking therapy, ask your GP. They will know what's available locally and can help you decide which treatment is best for you.

Lots of GP surgeries provide counselling or therapy services on the NHS. If counselling or therapy isn't available at the surgery, your GP may refer you to a local psychological therapies service.

You may also be able to self-refer for counselling or therapy. This means you contact the psychological therapies service directly yourself. You may want to discuss it with your GP first.

Talking Therapies Barking & Dagenham (IAPT)

Talking Therapies Barking & Dagenham (IAPT) is a free NHS service which offers help to learn new ways to cope with everyday pressures or unexpected events which leave you feeling a little or very low in mood or anxious.    

We offer talking therapies including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Counselling for Depression, Couples Therapy, Dynamic Interpersonal Therapy, EMDR, and Interpersonal therapy. We also offer groups and courses to learn ways to cope with low mood, anxiety and more.

If you would like to find out more about our service and how we can help please visit our talking therapies website.

If you are aged over 18 years, then why not give us a call on 0300 300 1554 Option 3, alternatively, you can self-refer online using our self-referral form.

Our office is open between the hours of 9am to 5pm and we will book you in for a short telephone assessment. If the service is right for you we can offer appointments up to 8pm Monday to Thursday, if we can’t help we may be able to find a service that can.

Outside of office hours there is an answerphone. Please leave your name and contact details and we will phone you back as soon as we can.

Who to contact and more information:

Further information on the talking therapies website

Psychological therapies on the NHS

NHS  - Free therapy or counselling

Other places that offer therapy

Some charities offer cheap or free talking therapies or group support. These include:

  • Cruse for bereavement care
  • Mind for mental health problems
  • Relate for relationship counselling

Some employers provide counselling for their employees and lots of colleges and universities offer free therapy to students who need it.

Paying for private therapy

If you can afford it, you can choose to pay for your therapy privately. The cost of talking therapy varies and a one-hour session can cost between £50 and £100. Your GP may be able to suggest a local private therapist or you can find a therapist online.

It's essential to check that the therapist is listed on one of the registers of approved practitioners.

The following organisations have approved therapists:

It's a good idea to talk to several therapists before you decide which one is right for you.

Mental health needs assessment

We carry out needs assessments for a range of health conditions, to help us shape local services according to local needs. 

Nationally there is a renewed focus on mental health with national government launching a mental health strategy:

  • No health without mental health, in 2011
  • Closing the gap: priorities for essential change in mental health, in 2014

Central to closing the gap, is parity of esteem between mental health services and physical health services.

The mental health needs assessment was done to better understand the borough's picture of mental health need and the vision for improving services:

  • understand the prevalence of mental illness in Barking and Dagenham and patterns of future need
  • consult with key stakeholders including carers to obtain a wide range of views on current services and unmet needs.
  • produce an agreed set of recommendations and supporting actions that can be used to improve the state of mental health care in the borough

There has been an increasing focus on mental health in the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham (LBBD). This needs assessment provides the information to map the way forward.

Supporting documents

Rehab 4 Addiction is an advisory and referral service for people who suffer from alcohol, drug and behavioural addiction and their loved ones.  They offer immediate access to quality rehabilitation centres in literally any corner of the United Kingdom. 

They also offer a range of services and help signpost you to the most effective treatments which includes alcohol rehab, drug rehab, detox services, intervention, aftercare and outpatient counselling. 

Their helpline advisors are extremely committed to helping you in your quest to locate effective treatments for addiction.

OK Rehab has a mission to deliver truly inclusive addiction treatment.  They believe that everyone has the chance to turn their situation around, no matter how complicated it may be. 

They assist people in rebuilding their lives and provide addiction treatment, not just with meetings but also with deep and lasting lifestyle changes, including a shift in what you feel you are capable of achieving.