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Mental Health Awareness Zones in Colleges

Zones you should check out in college campuses which help in improving college students mental health awareness.

marcia-forrest

Marcia

Forrest

Last Updated: January 8th, 2021


Mental Health Awareness Zones in Colleges
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Mental health for college students has been studied by researchers for decades. Since the 1920s, it has been clear that higher education has a lot of stress which wear upon on students such as academic plans, financial concerns and even post-graduation plans. Anxiety and depression can be worsened by this new mental health concerns. Feelings of hopelessness, sleep disturbances, irritability and restlessness can make college feel harder than it is.

When selecting a college campus to study in, it pays to take into consideration about campus design due to these reasons. Your college experience is greatly affected by your campus design. For college students to support their mental health, they either change their existing routines or choose another campus. During this COVID-19 pandemic, search consideration is important to help in reducing your anxious levels and being depressed than normal.

Mental Health Awareness Zones To Look For in a College Campus

1. A Quiet Sleeping Space

A Quiet Sleeping Space in College

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Failing to have a good night's sleep is one of the building blocks for being mentally unwell. A sleep deprived student is more likely to have trouble staying awake during the day, sensitive to disruptions during the day and even trouble completing tasks. Frequent sleep disturbances are [linked to depression](https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sleh.2016.01.007) which will make you more irritable and easily angered.

The physical environment in your college dorm or where you sleep can influence your sleep. Most colleges have less amenities and require students to at least have one roommate. Roommates nighttime conversations or even their lighting can be disruptive. College students who live alone tend to get more sleep as they have better nighttime routines. To improve on your mental health, make sure your room is comfortable by having a good room temperature. Good room temperature will improve your sleep, thereby making your sleep less irritable lowering depressive symptoms. Some college dorms have air conditioners which turn themselves off when windows are open.

2. Socializing Places

College students with mental health concerns may have mental health concerns about the fear of social situations that often interfere with their daily routine, relationships and even school work. Students will mainly seek a supportive campus that will make them feel wanted and accepted. This is achieved through developing a social network. Crowded public spaces for social networking can increase stress even for those without mental health challenges.

Finding a friend is one of the healthy strategy to provide some positivity in your daily life rather than some students who may be tempted to rely on alcohol to ease social anxiety. Cafeterias and coffee shops are some good places that may offer the opportunity for social support to those lacking connections. Some universities have student entrepreneurship residential groups which can create support networks for students.

The in-person interactions done in campus will be limited due to the COVID-19 restrictions. This might lead to some schools sanctioning social or educational events, like skill building workshops which may provide regular social life that doesn't come easily.

3. Natural Light and Green Spaces

Natural light and green spaces often enhances college students productivity and concentration while improving their emotional well-being and mental health. Natural light will also provide vitamin D for students.

Green spaces in a college campus such as playing fields and parks, allow students to escape daily stress. Spending your time in this spaces you will also be enjoying natural light. A study conducted concluded that college students feel more satisfied with their college experience when the campus is more greener, as well as the graduation rates go high.

During winters college students should create a plan for getting vitamin D as well. During this time college students are advised to practice light therapy where they sit under a lamp emitting light that mimics natural light.

4. Amenities and Services

Social Amenities and Services in College

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Accessing student services and off-campus amenities can improve any college student experience. Colleges that follow this principle are located in isolated plots of land where they are able to plan their campuses with students' daily needs in mind.

On-campus counselling can be great for students trying to stay on top of their mental health care although these services are often under-staffed and under-funded. Students can also use community facilities which will also help in improving their college experience. New York City is ranked as the number one walkable city in the United States while Arkansas is at the lowest.

5. College Mood Designs

Students mental health and how they fare in school can be affected by their learning environments which is responsible for their moods and behaviors. School building designs can affect how students act, feel and make sense of their environments. The colors used in college campus building designs, can make students feel warm, calm, cool, excluded or invited. For example, green can be relaxing while red can be energizing.

College students learning environments should also include views that will allow their minds and eyes to take a break. Art in classes such as a landscape art in a wall or the view from outside the window can offer stress relief which will result to improvement in their mental health. Many universities have art galleries which can break up the heavy classroom views and if there is no art gallery in school or in your local area consider making your own gallery. Many websites have tutorials on how to make art without breaking your bank.


marcia-forrest
Marcia
Forrest


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