Students and Depression

depressed studentEvery college student knows that ridiculous amounts of stress are part of the college experience. We struggle with trying to pick a college majorthat will get us a job we will actually like, pull all-nighters for exams that are worth a majority of our grade, have fights with friends and family members, and worry about trying to find a job in a bad economy.

College is also a time of change.

“Students experience many firsts, including new lifestyle, friends, roommates, exposure to new cultures and alternate ways of thinking,” said Hilary Silver, a licensed clinical social worker and mental health expert for Campus Calm.

All of these stresses can become overwhelming for students. “If students do not feel adequate or prepared to cope with the new environment of a college campus, they could easily become susceptible to depression and anxiety,” said Harrison Davis, Coordinator of the Community Counseling program at North Georgia College & State University.

According to PsychCentral, the average age for the onset of mental health conditions is when people are in college, or between 18 and 24 years old; seventy-five percent of those who suffer from anxiety disorders develop symptoms before they are 22 years old.

Recently, students at Cornell University have died from suspected suicide, related to stress or depression. It is possible that treatment and counseling could have prevented these deaths. Unfortunately, many students are embarrassed about suffering from intense stress or depression, and therefore, refuse to seek treatment.

Depression and anxiety disorders are not something to be ashamed about, but they can require professional help.

If you are feeling stressed out or depressed, please seek counseling. Most colleges offer counseling services for students. In addition to counseling, students should try to get enough sleep (eight hours is the ideal), eat healthy foods, exercise, and avoid caffeine and alcohol.

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