Michelle Hamill is the guest writer for this blog and a Senior at Georgia Regents University.
Considering the amount of pressure placed on college students by their families, society, and their own ambitions, it is not surprising that mental illness is rather common within the young adult population. The most common mental illnesses that afflict college students are depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). And furthermore…
Mental illness is common among young people. One in four young adults between the ages of 18 and 24 has a diagnosable mental illness.
Visiting a mental health professional is commonplace and well-advised. Seek out help. More than 25 percent of college students have been diagnosed or treated by a professional for a mental health condition within the past year.
College life is overwhelming and can be oppressive. More than 11 percent of college students have been diagnosed or treated for anxiety in the past year and more than 10 percent reported being diagnosed or treated for depression.
If you’re stressed and overworked, you’re not alone. More than 80 percent of college students felt overwhelmed by all they had to do in the past year and 45 percent have felt things were hopeless.
If you can personally relate to these statistics, hopefully you now realize that the next step is to seek out help. In our present day and age, sifting through the vast landscape of information and resources online can be daunting, especially considering the meager free time we college students have on our hands. In my attempt to simplify that process, I’ve compiled some resources in the area and online:
- For GRU Students: The Counseling Center provides free individual counseling services for students and employees. Visit them on the Summerville Campus in the Central Utilities Building Annex, 2nd floor, or call them at 706-737-1471. Additional information can be found at http://www.aug.edu/counseling/index.php
- If you need to talk to someone sooner, call the 24-Hour Crisis Line serving East Central Georgia – 706-560-2943.
- ULifelife is a great resource for college students seeking information about mental, physical, and emotional health as well as mental health resources specifically for college students. Visit their website at http://www.ulifeline.org/.
HEY, FAMILY MEMBERS AND FRIENDS OF COLLEGE STUDENTS:
Your words and actions towards college students could affect their successful completion of a degree. Here are some statistics that demonstrate why:
64 percent of young adults who are no longer in college are not attending college because of a mental health related reason.
40 percent of students with diagnosable mental health conditions did not seek help.
Concern of stigma is the number one reason students do not seek help.
Individuals living with mental illness are often afraid to seek help. They may fear stigmatization or disappointment, misunderstanding, and anger on the part of their friends and family. Be supportive.
Understand that college students have to deal with problems that they never before encountered. They have a heavier workload than ever before, are often pulled away from familiarity, friends, and family, and at the end of their education are greeted by debt with a side of unpromising job prospects. Realize that they are making the difficult transition from childhood to the responsibilities of adulthood. Listen to their problems and make an effort to understand, no matter how foreign their troubles may seem.
Learn about mental illness and how it specifically affects college students as well as how you can help at http://www.ulifeline.org/.
Resources I consulted: