1 in 4 students have considered self-harming
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On Tuesday of this week we celebrated the 25th World Mental Health Day.
First held in 1992, 10th October is a day dedicated to raising awareness of the importance of mental health and fighting the stigma surrounding it.
It seems this awareness is more essential than ever following a survey on university students which found that one in four students have considered self-harming.
The survey of over 17,000 students was conducted by Dig-In, in collaboration with The Insight Network.
Dr Stephen Pereira, from The Insight Network said "These stark findings should serve as a call to action for the UK to invest more in mental health care provision, and for universities and schools to ensure ease of access to critical services.
"Students can also hopefully draw comfort from the fact that they are not alone. Mental health issues can affect anyone, at any point in their life, and it’s only through continues awareness and education that progress in care provision can be made".
The survey found that 69% of students have suffered with anxiety or worry and 60% know of friends or family members who have suffered from mental health issues in the past 12 months.
Despite the increasing number of students who are struggling with their mental health issues, only 38% of those surveyed were aware of the mental health services their university had on offer.
The statistics showed that 69% of students admitted to concealing symptoms from family, friends and colleagues.
A study in 2016 found that students accepting counselling has almost doubled in the last five years, and demand for adequate university student support has grown.
With this come questions surrounding the quality of some universities’ student counselling services. Glasgow University has previously come under scrutiny after a student with a history of mental health issues was told that there was a possibility that she was not ‘ill enough’ to receive help from the university’s counselling service.
It is estimated that Glasgow University’s average waiting time between an assessment meeting until an actual counselling session is 85 days. This is despite the university almost doubling their budget on mental health and counselling.
For any students struggling with their mental health, there are services available to them. Charity Student Minds provide a list of services as well as contact details of the support available at each university and in each town.