Tuesday 10 October is World Mental Health day, aimed at raising awareness of mental health issues across the world and encouraging us to talk more openly about our own mental health.
First held in 1992, World Mental Health day is an annual event. The theme for this year is ‘workplace wellbeing’. This doesn’t just have to apply to having a job or working in an office, so why not use today to consider your mental wellbeing throughout your time at university.
Students are particularly susceptible to mental health conditions. Data released by the Higher Education Statistics agency shows that the number of students dropping out of university due to mental health problems had increased by 210% since the 2009-10 academic year.
If you are concerned about your own mental health or the mental health of someone you know, there is a variety of services on campus offering support and help. Enabling Services at the university offer workshops and drop in sessions alongside self-help guides written by NHS Clinical Psychologists, and can refer you to the NHS or other available services if you need more support.
The Union’s Advice Centre and Peer Support offer drop ins and confidential listening sessions, while the Nightline telephone information and listening service is also open every evening during term time from 8pm-8am if you need someone to talk to confidentially. Charities such as Solent Mind and the Mental Health foundation can also offer support and advice.
Perhaps most importantly, use today to discuss mental health openly, and fight against the stigma and shame that is still attached to it in some quarters. Feelings of shame can often be a hindrance to those suffering or seeking support, and although we are moving in the right direction, it seems there is still much progress to be made.