On-campus resources available for students battling stress

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A student feels overwhelmed with stress as finals and graduation approaches. BYU has created a variety of on-campus resources to help students deal with stress and mental illness. (Universe Photo)

On-campus resources are available for students with stress, and for those who suffer from mental illnesses.

More than 30 percent of all college students have sought care for mental illnesses in the past 12 months according to American Psychology Association. This was a six percent increase from 2012, which was 24 percent.

BYU provides help to students dealing with mental illness as these rates continue to rise.

BYU’s Stress Management and Biofeedback Services provides students with techniques on how to manage the physical toll stress has on the body. Students can come into the biofeedback lab in the bottom of the Wilkinson Center to learn breathing techniques from professionals. The lab also has online tools with exercises that are free for students.

Barbara Morrell from the Stress Management and Biofeedback Services office said biofeedback can help students manage stress wherever they are.

“Everyone can benefit by slowing down their breathing during times of stress,” Morrell said. “Biofeedback, which measures stress indicators in the body like heart rate and muscle tension, helps individuals to let go of stress.”

Students can also make appointments with professional counselors to help cope with stress that graduation and final exams bring. All students have access to this free, on-campus service.

Pre-doctoral intern with BYU’s Counseling and Psychological Services Jennifer Williams said the counseling center can be a great resource for students looking to get extra help in dealing with anxiety and stress.

“I would want all BYU students to know that we have a range of free services available to them that can help them deal with whatever stressful or impactful events they are experiencing,” Williams said. “We have a wonderful staff of professionals who are sincerely invested in welcoming them to the counseling center and offering them quality mental health services.”

Williams also said it’s important for students to take time for themselves and do activities they enjoy to relieve stress.

“Integrate pleasant and meaningful experiences into your life by finding or making time for things you enjoy and/or are passionate about,” Williams said. “This can only take a small bit of time but can be very centering and rejuvenating.”

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