Getting help

Advice and support

If you can’t wake someone up or you are concerned that they may have sustained a head injury from a drug or alcohol related fall – call an ambulance immediately – dial Triple Zero (000).

If the person has been mixing drugs with alcohol or other drugs, tell the NSW Ambulance paramedic exactly what they have taken.

Paramedics are there to help. Generally paramedics don’t involve the police unless there is danger to themselves or other people/children, someone dies, or a crime (such as violence or theft) has been committed.

Drug warnings

Public drug warnings for illicit drugs circulating in NSW linked to serious harm and illness are published by NSW Health.

Web chat

ADIS Web Chat is a free, anonymous and confidential online chat service for people who have concerns about alcohol or other drug use.

Available Monday to Friday 8.30am – 5pm (including public holidays).

Phone support and information

Alcohol and Drug Information Service (ADIS) NSW operates 24 hours, 7 days a week to provide education, information, crisis counselling and support.

Call 1800 250 015  or visit yourroom.health.nsw.gov.au

Call ADIS for the nearest needle and syringe program (NSP) outlet.

Contact ADIS for specialist pregnancy services in NSW.

The ADIS Stimulant Treatment Line provides 24/7 advice, support, referral and counselling for people concerned about stimulants or for information on the Stimulant Treatment Program. Call (02) 9361 8088 or 1800 101 188.

The Opioid Treatment Line (OTL) is a helpline providing opiate pharmacotherapy information (including methadone and buprenorphine), referrals, and advice. Call 1800 642 428.

Counselling Online is a free online alcohol and drug counselling service providing support for alcohol and other drug users, and others affected by alcohol and drug use in the community, including family members, relatives and friends. Call DirectLine 1800 888 236

Family Drug Support provides 24/7 telephone support to families in crisis due to drug and alcohol issues. Call the helpline on 1300 368 186 or visit www.fds.org.au

Family Drug Support Online is a free interactive resource designed specifically to support families struggling to deal with drug and alcohol problems. Visit www.fdsonline.org.au

Lifeline operates 24 hours, 7 days a week and provides counselling and information, suicide prevention, crisis support and mental health services. Call 13 11 14

Quitline 13 QUIT (13 7848) is a confidential telephone based service designed to help smokers quit smoking, funded by the Cancer Institute NSW. Staff can also provide assistance to the family and friends of smokers and others requesting information about smoking.

Parent Line is a telephone counselling, information and referral service for parents and carers of children ages 0 to 18 in New South Wales. Call 1300 1300 52 or visit www.parentline.org.au

Reach Out is the most accessed online mental health service for young people and their parents in Australia, visit www.au.reachout.com

Kids Helpline is a free, 24 hour counselling service for young people aged 5 to 25 years. Counselling is offered via the Kids Helpline website www.kidshelpline.com.au or email or call 1800 55 1800.

Youth Law Australia is a community legal service dedicated to helping children and young people in Australia and their supporters find a legal solution to their problems. They provide free and confidential legal advice, assistance and referrals to young people and their advocates. Find information or contact their online service.

Your Service Hub  is an online directory of health and welfare services. You can use Your Service Hub to find alcohol and other drug services if you need support for your own or someone else's substance use. Visit the Service Hub website

ACON's M3THOD webpage features a self-assessment tool allowing people to understand whether their drug use is impacting on other areas of their lives, ow who are looking to make a change in relation to their drug use. It includes a free chat service accessible to people either in person or via video call. Visit the M3thod webpage.

Specialist services

Aboriginal Health and Medical Research Council provides links to Aboriginal community controlled health services across NSW. Visit www.ahmrc.org.au for information about AHMRC members including a regional map, information and links to members websites.

Odyssey Multicultural Programs provides services for people from culturally and linguistically diverse communities. Contact MCP on (02) 8608 2611 or 1800 397 739 for counselling and support services for CALD communities. Visit their website for more information.

Treatment and support

If drugs or alcohol are negatively impacting on your health, family, relationships, work, school or other social situations, you may need to seek help. Support services are available for you, your family and friends.

Visit the Your Room website to find information about the range of treatment and support services available in NSW.

NSW Health Drug and Alcohol Services – to access a local public drug and alcohol service in NSW, contact your local area health service.

Cannabis clinics provide assessment and counselling for individuals about their cannabis use, offer education, support and brief counselling to concerned family members and provide specialised treatment for people with co-existing cannabis and mental health issues. Contact ADIS (02) 9361 8000 (Sydney metro) or 1800 250 015 (regional NSW) for your local clinic.

The Stimulant Treament Program provides treatment for stimulant users. The clinics offer outpatient services to people 16 years and older seeking to stop or reduce their use of amphetamines, methamphetamines, cocaine or ecstasy. Contact the Stimulant Treatment Line (02) 9361 8088 (Sydney) or 1800 101 188 (regional NSW) for information about the program.

Eheadspace provides mental and health wellbeing support, information and services to young people (aged 12 to 25) and their families and friends. Visit eheadspace.org.au

Self help organisations

Smart Recovery is a voluntary self-help group that assists people in recovering from alcohol, drug use and other addictive behaviours. Visit www.smartrecoveryaustralia.com.au

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is a self help organisation for people with alcohol problems. Phone the national helpline number 1300 22 22 22 and your call will be connected to your nearest local AA in your state or visit: www.aa.org.au

Narcotics Anonymous Australia, is a non profit fellowship or society of recovering addicts who meet regularly to help each other stay clean via a program of complete abstinence from all drugs. Call ADIS for the nearest Narcotics Anonymous (NA)-Anon or visit www.na.org.au  

24 hour confidential telephone counselling services

NSW: Alcohol and Drug Information Service (ADIS) *Toll Free 1800 250 015 or Tel (02) 9361 8000 (Sydney metro)

Victoria:  *Toll free: 1800 888 236

Western Australia: Alcohol and Drug Support Line Tel (08) 9442 5000 *Toll Free 1800 198 024 Email: alcoholdrugsupport@mhc.wa.gov.au 
Website: www.mhc.wa.gov.au

Queensland: Alcohol and Drug Information Service (ADIS) Tel (07) 3837 5989 *Toll Free 1800 177 833

South Australia: Alcohol and Drug Information Service (ADIS) Tel (0808363 8618 * Toll Free 1300 131 340

Northern Territory: Amity Community Service Tel (08) 8944 6565 *Toll Free 1800 684 372 Alcohol and Drug Information Service (ADIS) *Toll Free 1800 131 350

Tasmania: Alcohol and Drug Information Service (ADIS) Toll Free 1800 811 994

ACT: Alcohol and Drug Information Service (ADIS) Tel (02) 6207 9977

*Toll free numbers are only available if you are calling from within that state.

Videos in community languages

How do you get help when drug and alcohol use become a problem? The Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District has produced a series of videos in community languages that provide information on where and how to get help for yourself or for someone you care about.

The Where can I get help when alcohol or drugs are a problem? videos are available in Arabic, Assyrian, Burmese, Cantonese, Chaldean, English, Farsi, Hazaragi, Hindi, Karenni, Kirundi, Mandarin Nepali, Swahili, Tigrinya and Vietnamese.

Book: A guide to coping

The book A guide to coping: support for families faced with problematic drug use, 2007 by Family Drug Support is designed to aid parents, families and friends of drug users. It provides help on how to deal with crisis situations such as overdose and up-to-date information on treatment options.

Ask at your local public library.