Navigating mental health challenges: UVU Mental Health Services

Reading Time: 2 minutes For many students, attending college comes with a range of mental health challenges such as stress, anxiety, or depression. UVU has resources to help students with these challenges.

Student Health Services, located at SC221, provides students with various mental health services including counseling and coaching. Photo by Nathalia Dominquez

Reading Time: 2 minutes

According to the American Psychological Association (APA) in 2013, 41.6% of college students reported anxiety as their top pressing concern, and 36.4% reported depression (mental health) as the most pressing concern. 

One of the most crucial steps in managing mental health challenges is to reach out to mental health professionals. College counseling services offer confidential support to students struggling with stress, anxiety or depression. UVU has dedicated counseling centers that provide individual group or couples therapy sessions. Mental Health Services provide assessments and treatment for various mental health concerns such as anxiety, depression, eating disorders, trauma, grief, substance abuse and relationship issues.  To facilitate accessibility, they have introduced a new digital portal for scheduling initial appointments. 

Self-care plays a pivotal role in maintaining good mental health. Engaging in activities that bring joy and relaxation — such as exercise, hobbies and spending time with loved ones — can significantly reduce stress and anxiety. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) emphasizes the importance of regular physical activity and adequate sleep for mental well-being. 

Mindfulness practices, including meditation and deep breathing exercises, can help manage overwhelming thoughts and emotions. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology suggests that mindfulness interventions can effectively reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. Resources such as meditation apps and online mindfulness courses are easily accessible to college students. 

Striking a healthy balance between academic responsibilities and personal life is crucial. Setting realistic goals and managing time effectively can alleviate the pressure that often contributes to mental health challenges.  

According to UVU student, Darrian Hensel, who studies political science, “Staying active is the best for mental health. The idea is terrible for some, but some light exercise for 20 minutes a day is key to helping with low moods, even if it’s just brisk walking. The endorphins released during exercise are clinically proven to help us feel happy, sleep better, and focus more. Also, having a me time. It can be hard trying to find time for yourself in college when you’re trying to keep up with everything else but try to take the pressure off and do something you enjoy distracting yourself. Watch your favorite series, draw, or listen to music. Meditating is also a great way to calm your mind, I have felt it helps even if it’s just for 20 minutes a day.”  

Navigating mental health challenges during college is a journey that requires awareness, effort and proactive steps. By seeking professional help, practicing self-care, adopting mindfulness techniques, managing academic and personal life, building a support system and raising awareness, students can effectively cope with stress, anxiety or depression. It’s crucial to remember that seeking help is a sign of strength, and colleges are responsible for fostering a supportive environment that prioritizes the well-being of their students. 

UVU Mental Health Services are located within the Student Health Services office located in SC 221. Operating hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For students seeking learning disability assessments, crisis intervention or after-hours support, there are dedicated services that are accessible throughout the work week. In cases of after-hours crisis, immediate assistance can be sought by contacting the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 9-8-8 or texting “START” to 741-741 to connect with a counselor via the Crisis Text Line.

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