DE-STRESS BREAK: Students Working to Reduce Pre-Finals Stress & Promote Mental Health AwarenessApr 26th, 2012 | By La Vie | Category: News
Cramming for finals is practically inevitable. Even if you’ve gone to class and taken notes, you haven’t exactly been studying the material every weekend. Your heart starts pounding just thinking about essay questions. You worry that you’ll get sick from stress.
Taking care of your mental health is just as important as taking care of your grades, which is why Active Minds, Inc., Anxiety Disorders Association of America and OCD Chicago, with support from the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, are sponsoring the 7th annual National Stress Øut Day. National Stress Øut Day is a nationwide effort to provide pre-finals stress relief and educate students about the difference between everyday anxiety and an anxiety disorder or other mental illness.
Active Minds at Lebanon Valley College’s and Counseling Services’ semesterly De-Stress Break on May 1st, 2012 from 11am to 1pm in Mund College Center and outside on the Social Quad. The event entails campus student organizations gathering together to help sponsor stress relief themed events for the student body to participate in that day. A multitude of organizations will set up tables on the social quad with various activities such as coloring, bubble station, ice your own lemonade stand, liquid nitrogen ice cream, make your own stress ball, massage therapists, etc. Student musicians from Lebanon Valley College and the Lancaster, PA area will be performing during the event as well. These up and coming performers include Ryan Wickersham, also of Lancaster, PA and various on campus groups. The overall theme of the day stress relief comes right before finals week providing an outlet for students to relax and de-stress for a little while.
Anxiety disorders are one of the most common mental health problems on college campuses. Forty million U.S. adults suffer from an anxiety disorder, and 75% of them experience their first episode of anxiety before age 22. Though not all students experience anxiety disorders, recent national data from the Higher Education Research Institute at UCLA indicate that college student emotional health is at record low levels. According to a 2009 survey by the American College Health Association 46% of college students said they felt “things were hopeless” at least once in the previous 12 months, and nearly a third had been so depressed that it was difficult to function. National Stress Øut Day exists to open a conversation about mental health and help all students recognize and take care of their mental health during the stressful period at the end of the semester.
This year’s theme is “Laugh More.” Laughter has been proven to help reduce stress, improve mood, boost one’s immune system, improve health, increase alertness and memory, and facilitate social relationships. Active Minds will be encouraging students to take some time out to laugh as a way to promote well-being in the midst of finals as well as reminding students that sometimes something more serious is going on and laughter is not enough. Anxiety disorders are real, serious mental health disorders that can significantly interfere with one’s life.
About Active Minds, Inc.
Active Minds is the young adult voice in mental health advocacy and supports a rapidly growing network of more than 300 student-run, student-led chapters on colleges and universities throughout North America. By developing and supporting student-run mental health awareness, education and advocacy chapters on campuses, Active Minds works to increase students’ awareness of mental health issues, provide information and resources regarding mental health and mental health disorders, encourage students to seek help as soon as it is needed, and serve as liaison between students and the mental health community. Our vision is to create a better life for all who are affected by mental health disorders. Active Minds is a national non-profit headquartered in Washington D.C. To learn more, visit www.activeminds.org.
The Anxiety Disorders Association of America (ADAA) is the leading national nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing awareness and improving the diagnosis, treatment, and cure of anxiety disorders through education and research. ADAA offers free educational information and resources about anxiety disorders, local treatment providers, self-help groups, self-tests, clinical trials, and more. ADAA promotes the message that anxiety disorders are real, serious, and treatable.
Founded in 1994, OCD Chicago works to increase public and professional awareness of OCD, educate and support people with OCD and their families, and to encourage research into new treatments and a cure. OCD Chicago is dedicated to improving the lives of people who suffer with OCD—a resource for individuals, families, mental health professionals, educators, clergy and the media across the country.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a 24-hour, toll-free telephone helpline available to anyone in emotional distress and/or suicidal crisis. If you need help, please dial 1-800-273-TALK (8255). You will be routed to the closest possible crisis center in your area. With over 120 certified crisis centers across the country, our mission is to provide immediate assistance to anyone seeking mental health services. Call for yourself, or someone you care about. When you call, a trained telephone worker will listen to your concern, assess its nature and severity, and provide brief support, community resource referrals or crisis service linkages, as needed. Your call is free and confidential.
Lebanon Valley College Counseling Services
The LVC staff understands that your college experience may present personal and transitional challenges, as well as opportunities for growth. Our counseling services are designed to promote a holistic view of wellness in mind, body, and spirit. Students seek counseling for a variety of issues, some of which include: academic difficulties, alcohol/drug concerns, anger management, anxiety, depression, difficulty concentrating, eating disorders, family problems, and homesickness, lack of assertiveness, relationship issues, and stress. In addition, the counseling staff periodically offers outreach programs to discuss issues that have an impact on the lives of college students. Some of these programs address the following topics: dating awareness, date rape prevention, stress management, eating disorders, depression and the college student, anxiety and the college student, and alcohol awareness.
For more information, please contact:
Alyssa Carter, Active Minds at Lebanon Valley College
Dr. Stevie Falk, Director of Counseling Services at Lebanon Valley College
717.867.6696 (phone) 717.867.6889(fax)
Maggie Bertram, Active Minds, Inc.
(202) 332-9595 x112