Support for College Students with Anxiety

While everyone experiences anxiety (especially college students during mid-terms and finals) some people experience anxiety that isn’t proportional to the situation, doesn’t go away and significantly impacts their daily activities and ability to function.  Anxiety is a medical condition that can stem from genetics, biochemistry and life events.

Anxiety is the most common mental illness in the United States affecting more than 40 million adults age 18 and older almost one-fifth of the population, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. 

Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety 

There are several types of anxiety disorders including generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder and social anxiety disorder. 

  • Intense episodes of fear or panic
  • Recurring nightmares
  • Avoidance of social situations
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Repeated, unwanted thoughts (obsessions)
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Upsetting, intrusive memories of a traumatic event
  • Physical symptoms such as nausea, stomach pain, rapid heart rate, muscle tension, sweating, shaking, dizziness, numbness, or difficulty breathing

If You Are in Crisis: Call the toll-free National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text START to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The service is available to anyone. All communications are confidential.

Getting help on campus

If you’re experiencing many of these signs and symptoms and it’s impairing your ability to function as a college student, we suggest you:

  • Talk to friends and family about it.
  • Go to the college counseling office, see a psychiatrist, seek out support groups on campus (i.e., Active Minds).
  • Try integrating these non-clinical holistic skills that can help:
    • Exercise
    • Yoga
    • Meditation
    • Mindfulness
    • Better Nutrition

If you’ve tried these and are still feeling very overwhelmed then maybe a medical leave of absence is the right move for you. 

A medical leave of absence from school can be a scary concept where you’re worried about falling behind and leaving your classmates, but the pause may be the most important step you take.   

Let us help 

College Re-Entry is a semester long non-clinical program that can provide the structure and community that you need during your medical leave of absence to return to college with confidence. 

CRE has mindfulness, fitness, nutrition specialists to develop a wellness plan to help you gain more control over your symptoms.  You’ll also have access to one-on-one coaching from our social workers, be paired with a mentor who experienced mental health challenges in college and improve your academic skills and stress relief techniques through our seminars.  Most importantly you’ll have a positive environment you can come to every day and be a part of a supportive community of other students also experiencing mental health challenges.


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