Vital Signs: Mind your mental health

By Anna Kellaher
Columnist

The week of Oct. 7 to Oct. 13 marked the 28th annual Mental Health Awareness Week. Critical for a person’s overall health and well-being, mental health refers to conditions that affect a person’s thinking, feeling or mood.

Mental health is a prevalent issue for college students, as 75 percent of young adults develop chronic mental health conditions by age 24, according to National Alliance on Mental Illness.

The college transition can be stressful since it involves a lot of changes, such as living with a roommate, being away from home and getting used to having a heavier workload. It can also be a challenge to manage a pre-existing mental health condition in a new environment. However, there are resources available to all students at the College that help students maintain their mental health.

Meditation can reduce stress and boost your mood. (YouTube)

Counseling and Psychological Services provides group counseling sessions and short term individual counseling sessions. It also has workshops specific to issues that students face, including anxiety, family functioning and sexual identity. CAPS will also help you find off-campus services if you want longer individual counseling. CAPS is located in Eickhoff Hall Room 107 and is open Monday through Friday.

At the TCNJ Clinic, graduate student interns provide low-cost counseling services under the supervision of licensed professionals. The services are available to the College’s students and faculty, as well as members of the surrounding community. The TCNJ Clinic is located in Forcina Hall Room 124 and is open Monday through Thursday.

The Center for Mindfulness and Compassion hosts 30-minute drop-in meditation sessions in the Spiritual Center that can help ease stress. These sessions run on Mondays at 6:30 p.m., Tuesdays at 8:30 a.m. and Thursdays at 7 p.m.

Remember that mental health is just as important as your physical health, and don’t hesitate to use the resources available to you.