24 Hour Crisis
& Suicide Hotline
(317) 251-7575 or
Factsheet: Depression in College
Sometimes the multitude of life’s changes that occur during your college years
can trigger serious depression. At this vulnerable time, the smartest thing you
can do for yourself is to seek help. If your feelings of constant stress and
sadness go on for weeks or months, you may be experiencing more than just
difficulty adjusting to life’s changes. Seek assistance from a doctor
or mental health professional, the university counseling service, or the student
health center. While in treatment, there are a number of steps you
can take to help you cope on your way to recovery.
- Carefully plan your day. Make time every day to
prioritize your work. Prioritizing can give you a sense of control over what you must do
and a sense that you can do it.
- Plan your work and sleep schedules. Too many students
defer doing important class work until nighttime, work through much of the night,
and start every day feeling exhausted. Constant fatigue can be a
critical trigger for depression. Seven or eight hours of sleep a night
is important to your well- being.
- Participate in an extracurricular activity. Sports,
theater, fraternities and sororities, the student newspaper – whatever
interests you – can bring opportunities to meet people interested in the
same things you are, and these activities provide welcome change from class work.
- Seek support from other people. This may be a roommate or
a friend from class. Friendships can help make a strange place feel more friendly
and comfortable. Sharing your emotions reduces isolation and helps you realize
that you are not alone.
- Try relaxation methods. These include meditation, deep
breathing, warm baths, long walks, exercise – whatever you enjoy that lessens
your feelings of stress and discomfort.
- Take time for yourself every day. Make special time for
yourself – even if it’s only for 15 minutes a day. Focusing on
yourself can be energizing and gives you a feeling of purpose and control
over your life.
- Work towards recovery. The most important
step in combating depression and reclaiming your college experience is to
seek treatment. Your physician should communicate to you that remission
of symptoms should be your goal and work with you to determine whether psychological
counseling, medication or a combination of both treatments is needed.
For More Information:
For help finding treatment, support groups, medication information, help paying for your medications,
your local Mental Health America affiliate, and other mental health-related services in your community,
please contact us.
If you or someone you know is in crisis now, seek
help immediately. Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) to reach a 24 hour
crisis center or dial 911 for immediate assistance.
Page last updated: 3/8/2009
P.O. Box 51
Seymour, IN 47274
Phone: (812) 522-3480
Fax: (812) 524-8176