Supporting your own Mental Health

Everyone has a mental health that can be affected by a number of issue ranging from the ability to socialise, keeping up with deadlines and financial constraints. Whilst a University issues may be presented differently, especially if it’s your first time living away from home. I is said that 1 In 4 students are likely to suffer from mental illness while at University and knowing how to handle it can be a complication for many students.

Understanding your own mental health can be a challenge but it is the first step to overcoming it. The symptoms of suffering from a mental health issue vary from person to person and may be often overlooked as a one-off health illness, but if you are genuinely concerned please seek immediate help. Common signs include a feeling of mixed emotions with the inability to maintain concentration and often the withdrawal from social situations. This may also result in excessive worrying due to the inability to cope with stressful situations that may affect your daily habits such as eating and sleeping.

What can you do?

1) Take a break

Stress is a common factor of multiple mental health problems such as Depression, which makes it important to understand how you can best manage stressful situations. Taking a break can be small but effective action as you should always make time to appreciate your hard work by treating yourself. Self-care should always be a priority while at University and its ok to have some time out when you need it.

2) Find a hobby

There are plenty of activities provided by the Student Union each month that allow student to get out and about. However, you could also join some of the many clubs and societies provided by Askham Bryan where you can meet new people and learn new skills. If you prefer to do things more independently you could perhaps learn how to cook new recipes, do some creating sketching, get active with jogging or perhaps volunteer somewhere local. Keeping yourself active can be a great way to benefit your self-esteem. You might find that it helps to boost your confidence and perhaps that of others around you as well, so finding a new hobby may be the key to helping you feel more comfortable at university.

3) Share your feelings

Talking to your friends and family about your mental health can be a great benefit as they may also be in the same situation. Talking can be a relief for many student as hiding the issue doesn’t make the issue go away. Its likely that if someone is listening to you it’ll make you feel less alone and you can have some opinions on how to get further help. It may also provide encouragement for others in your situation to open up as it is just as important to care for other people’s mental health alongside your own.

Who to Contact?

There are many charities and organisations that specialise in mental health, we do recommend visiting your doctor at a local GP for information on specialist services.

• The Samaritans: Call 116 123 or visit https://www.samaritans.org/
• Mind Infoline: Call  0300 123 3393 or visit https://www.mind.org.uk/
• Young Minds: Call  0808 802 5544 or visit https://youngminds.org.uk/
• NHS Choices: https://www.nhs.uk/

For help here at Askham Bryan you can also contact our Student Wellbeing Coordinator Victoria Borradaile through email at victoria.borradaile@askham-bryan.ac.uk or call 01904 772398.

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