Mental Health in College Campuses: What we Need to Know

college mental health

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  • Anxiety and depression are no longer buzzwords and are no longer associated with eccentricity.

    They are bonafide health issues which require medical diagnosis and a proper treatment.

    A recent study has revealed that 1 in 5 college students currently suffer from anxiety or depression.

    There are many underlying factors to this, which include increasing debt, peer-pressure, among others.

    College can be a wonderful, joyous time for students. It helps form life-long bonds. After all, it’s where students spend 4 years of their lives with young, like-minded, impressionable individuals. But it can also become a harrowing experience for someone who suffers from social anxiety and can exacerbate symptoms.

    Example:

    Imagine this scenario: Natasha got a got SAT score and entered a college of her choice. Everything seemed sunny, even exhilarating at first. However, a few weeks into college, she started feeling a pressure on her chest, tingling in her arms and legs, and back.

    At first, she thought it was a heart attack. University campus’s health wing gave her a clean chit; her heart was fine, but the symptoms persisted. Moreover, the increased pressure of class assignments, signing up for various clubs, got to her, and one day, she got a panic attack.

    Natasha was diagnosed with borderline anxiety, and mild Asperger’s. All her physical symptoms were manifestations of mental ones, the ones she kept ignoring.

    Natasha didn’t realize that in order to meet her own impossible standards and her parents’ expectations, she was doing a bit too much. She was on the verge of a burnout.

    Students suffering from depression tend to become lonely and isolated. Moreover, their peers tend to ignore them or completely shut them off. This is not a healthy sign and results in unhealthy coping mechanisms

    Perils of Technology

    Although technology and social media have helped us keep in constant touch with others, they have also played a role in alleviating anxiety and depressive behavior among people, mostly college students. The constant barrage of information compels college-goers to seek continuous validation from peers.

    This results in harmful practices, delusional tendencies, impaired social interaction, and often violent behavior. Sometimes, students aren’t able to tell a difference between the real and the virtual life. This results in social anxiety as the physical world quickly becomes dry and unappealing for such students.

    Continuous seeking of validation and a pressure to excel causes symptoms of anxiety and depression among college students. As a result of the above, a lack of healthy communication and proper counseling, students often turn to drugs as a sort of a refuge.

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    Conclusion:

    Students must realize that self-care is important and try to communicate and seek good counseling.

    Sources:

    http://time.com/5190291/anxiety-depression-college-university-students/
    https://www.aucccd.org/assets/documents/aucccd%202016%20monograph%20-%20public.pdf

    Image Credit: Pixabay

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