On July 16, 2022, the new 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline number came online, replacing the previous 1-800-273-8255 (TALK) number. 988 is an easier number to remember and to dial more quickly. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration sees 988 as just the first step in several towards a transformed crisis care system in America. But who should call the line and how does it work?
As the name suggests, the suicide prevention lifeline was developed to help those who are thinking of suicide or those who are concerned about someone else. However, there are no specific requirements to call the lifeline. You can call 988 any time you are experiencing a significant mental health issue. You can also call if you are having struggles with substance use, or experiencing any level of crisis from stress, or from any behavioral healthcare concern.