For students, school may be a highly stressful time. It is a period when people are balancing many tasks and attempting to define who they are. For them, this could be a trying moment mentally and emotionally. So how can we assist students in managing their mental health while attending school?
We can take a few steps to support pupils in managing their mental health at school. We may first make sure they have a strong support system. This entails having a confidante to talk to when anxious or overwhelmed. It might be a professor, therapist, parent, or friend. Second, we can assist them in developing constructive coping skills. They might need to learn how to exercise, meditate, or keep a journal. Finally, we can motivate them to take breaks as necessary. This can entail providing a quiet space in the classroom or allowing them to take a mental health day.
It’s critical to keep in mind that every learner differs from one another and that some might require more assistance than others. Reach out to the student you are concerned about and ask how you can help.
How does mental health affect students in schools?
When addressing how mental health affects children in schools, it can be challenging to know where to begin because it is a large and complex subject. However, there are a few crucial ideas that you should bear in mind. First, it’s crucial to keep in mind that mental wellness is more than just the absence of diagnosable mental diseases. Everybody’s whole emotional, psychological, and social well-being is a part of their mental health. It influences our thoughts, feelings, and actions as well.
According to a 2018 survey conducted by the National Education Union (NEU), nearly half (49%) of secondary school teaching staff reported incidents of students who had attempted suicide due to their stress, and 81% reported cases of students who had self-harmed as a coping mechanism.
Mental health illnesses can have an impact on social connections and academic performance, both of which are essential for students to succeed. However, if the right resources are put in place to support young people’s mental health needs, we can frequently enhance success and limit detrimental effects for students.
What are the challenges affecting students’ Mental Health?
For school students, mental health is a major concern. One in four students has a diagnosable mental health issue, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Academic setbacks, social disengagement, and even death can result from mental health issues.
There are several things that can make students’ mental health issues worse. Students who struggle to juggle studies with a social life and perhaps a job experience stress, worry, and sadness frequently. Students’ worries about money can also be a significant source of stress.
Although it can be a period of significant personal growth, can also be very stressful. Here are a few issues that may have an impact on students’ mental health.
Stress is a major factor in many students’ mental health problems. According to the American Psychological Association, students report feeling more stressed than adults. Stress can come from many different sources, including academic pressure, financial concerns, family problems, and social relationships.
The most prevalent mental health issue among students is anxiety disorders. The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that one in three students suffer from an anxiety problem. Anxiety problems can make it difficult for kids to do their homework or study if they are not treated. Their interactions with classmates and teachers can also be impacted. Students with anxiety disorders may occasionally miss many class days. Or they might skip school entirely.
Depression is another common mental health problem among students. The American Health Association reports that about 1 in 8 students has depression. Depression can lead to academic difficulties, social withdrawal, and even suicide.
- Substance Abuse
Substance abuse is a serious problem among students. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, about 1 in 4 students drinks alcohol excessively. This can lead to serious health problems, including liver damage and addiction.
- Eating Disorders
Eating disorders are another serious problem among students. According to the National Eating Disorders Association, about 1 in 10 students has an eating disorder. Eating disorders can lead to serious health problems, including heart disease and nutritional deficiencies.
College can be a time of great personal growth, but it can also be a time of great stress. There are many challenges that can affect students’ mental health, but there are also many resources available to help students cope with these challenges. If you are struggling with your mental health, talk to your doctor or a mental health professional.
What Steps Schools Should Take to Promote Positive Mental Health and Wellbeing?
It is the duty of educators and other school personnel to support mental health in classrooms. Often, even tiny adjustments can make a big difference in someone’s ability to feel better.
Encourage Social Time
Every week, allot 30 or an hour for students to interact with one another and concentrate on something outside of their studies. Encourage them to engage in conversation with their classmates and work on a challenging problem or challenge together.
Run Lunchtime Clubs
Run lunchtime clubs to provide pupils with a distraction throughout their meal. These clubs could be for any activity, including drama, baking, reading, film, and arts and crafts. Students will feel more included and will experience a temporary reduction in work-related stress thanks to the sense of community.
Have an Open-Door Policy
It’s critical that children understand they can come to you with any problems or worries they may have. Tell your students this so they understand you are always willing to listen. Even better, assign a teacher specifically to support any problematic pupils in each year group. Ideally, this individual will be knowledgeable about kid mental health and able to assist.
Make Mental Health Known
Sadly, people still feel uncomfortable talking about their mental health since it is still viewed as somewhat taboo. Many people also experience judgment if they discuss their issues. You should therefore make mental health a priority at your school. To let pupils know they’re not alone, bring up the topic in PSHE lectures, address it at assemblies, and observe awareness days like World Mental Health Day. For more information, see our Mental Health Resource Pack for Schools.
You may also invite charitable organizations like Mind and Rethink to speak at your school about their work and the importance of mental health. Parents and students should be invited.
Organize a Wellness Week
Plan a wellness week in your school to truly put student wellbeing at the forefront. Both the faculty and the students will gain from this. As part of your wellness week, you could:
- Connection Encouragement – Encourage interaction between students and get them to chat to persons they wouldn’t often talk to.
- Host a sports or activities day – Since physical activity is known to increase endorphins, take advantage of this fact and involve students and staff in a variety of activities. Encourage children to create modest objectives for themselves so they can feel proud of themselves when they accomplish them.
- Give to others – Donate to charities that support mental health by planning charitable events like bake sales or fancy-dress days. Giving to others has been shown to lower stress and enhance mental health.
- Be mindful – lead meditations; and foster a serene atmosphere.
A multilevel strategy involving coordinated efforts from parents, schools, healthcare institutions, digital media outlets, and community outreach is needed to address the complicated problem of mental health disorders in students. Reaching at-risk kids before situations develop into more significant problems requires early detection and intervention.
We should all place a high priority on promoting mental health in schools. Everyone could have mental health concerns at any time, so it’s critical that we get it right and provide our pupils with the best support we can. Gurgaon’s Best CBSE school for admission “Pragyanam” is one the most demanding and premium school, and they are providing 100% junk proof system for students, they are one of their own kind working to prevent the junk food consumption from children.