A person’s mental health or wellbeing can be negatively affected for a variety of reasons. Financial problems can be a common concern for students in higher education, but personal, academic and physical issues can also impact on a person’s ability to cope.
If you find yourself experiencing mental health issues for any reason during your time in higher education, you won’t be alone, and universities and colleges have all sorts of support systems in place to help students through difficult times. There are a range of external organisations that you can also turn to, particularly if you wish to remain anonymous.
University and college services
Universities and colleges all offer a mental health and counselling service which will allow you to talk with a trained advisor. They will listen to you and offer support and guidance. You can also speak to your personal tutor or the Student Union as a first port of call, and they will be able to advise and direct you towards the most relevant service(s) available.
Did you know that the Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA) is available to those with mental disabilities as well as physical? If you have a mental condition that affects your ability to study, you are eligible to apply for additional financial support that can be used to pay for equipment that you need for your course. You might also receive support in the form of a note-taker or mentor. Find out more about the DSA here.
In addition to university and college services, there are a range of external services that you can access either online, or by telephone if you wish to speak to someone urgently, or remain anonymous:
Young Minds provide support for all young people and empower them to overcome life’s challenges.
Text: If you need urgent help text YM to 85258. Texts are free from most major providers.
Childline is a free, private and confidential service where you can talk about anything. As part of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC), the service is available to young people up to the age of 19.
Telephone: 0800 1111
The Samaritans provide emotional support to anyone in emotional distress, struggling to cope, or at risk of suicide throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland.
Telephone: 116 123
Mind provide advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem. They also campaign to improve services, raise awareness and promote understanding.
Telephone: 0300 123 3393
For more information on How to look after your mental health at university, we recommend this article by savethestudent.org