Stress and anxiety have become increasingly common amongst students because of the competitive environment and absence of adequate counselling. University students are particularly more vulnerable to mental illnesses because they face a great deal of social, academic and psychological pressure during their university years. Mishandling of this pressure often leads to psychological problems as well as other issues such as poor academic outcomes, deterioration of physical health and overall wellbeing.
Students are constantly burdened with parents’ expectations, competition with peers, and the need to plan for the future — which adds to their stress and anxiety. Whilst educational institutions pride themselves on their academic achievements, they should also ensure that students are being facilitated and their mental health is protected.
All educational institutes should conduct seminars on self-awareness and offer counselling services to students. Communication with a counsellor can help students open about their struggles and tackle them with the help of a professional. Planned orientation sessions should be arranged at the beginning of academic semesters to inform students about the need to prioritise their mental health and seek support when necessary. Most mental health problems faced at this age are commonly overlooked even though they contribute significantly to mental illnesses during adulthood. Therefore, there is a need to properly address stress, anxiety and other mental health concerns amongst students from an early age.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 7th, 2022.