According to epidemiologists, the early adulthood years between 18 and 25 years witness increased cases of mental health challenges. It happens that most of these young adults are in college pursuing higher education. In the quest for answers, technology keeps on clipping up as a possible solution.
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Are there avenues through which students can achieve stable mental health using digital resources?
Digital resources are helpful in higher education because they make work easier and break the barriers of communication. Students also have a shot at self-help without the discomfort or anxiety of having to face counselors one-on-one. Here are ways in which a digital strategy will help to improve mental health in higher education environments.
Circulation of Mental Health Resources
The digital platform allows authorities and institutions to distribute mental health awareness materials. The materials can be shared on social media, a dedicated website, and other platforms where students may come across them and get the help they need. It forms part of a liberal way of sharing crucial mental health information to salvage students under your watch.
The digital strategy is enhanced by the possibility of using different types of content in your mental health campaign. The options range from video to text, and images. Such diversity when sharing information makes it easier for the target students to consume as well as act.
Young adults could be in denial about their failing mental health. However, when the message is shared in a subtle way such that they do not feel forced to consume the information, it becomes more helpful. They begin to take positive steps towards their mental health without direct awareness or a feeling of coercion.
One of the main challenges of mental health is denial. Students fail to admit stress or depression. It begins eating into their productivity even as academic performance flops. Mental health issues also affect their social lives as well. Because of denial, most students do not share their mental challenge. A digital strategy for mental health will help to incite the young adults to share their challenges and in the process find a solution.
The strategy allows a student to share his or her challenges without revealing identity. Concealing identity is important because it will shield the student from stigmatization. When the student reads stories or watches videos of others facing similar challenges, a solution will be easier to find.
Anonymous sharing comes with an instant search for help. It is a known fact that most suicides happen between midnight and 4.00 am. It is difficult for students or a victim to find a person willing to listen at that hour. However, with a digital strategy, remote counselors will be available 24/7. Due to continuous engagements, the victims have a place or platform to run to whenever the pressure is too much. Since it is remote, you prevent deaths or harm without the necessity for physical contact.
Mental health victims will find it easy to handle their situations with counseling. However, physical counseling comes with multiple challenges including denial. Victims feel like revealing their identity will result in stigmatization. To curb this challenge, college students can receive remote and anonymous counseling through the digital strategy.
Anonymous counseling takes place online where the student does not have to sign-up or provide personal details. The student victim can talk to counselors on phone or chat on social media as well as over the website. Such anonymous and remote operation allows the student to share more and freely. It is easier to find a solution without the fear of revelation and stigmatization.
Availability of Digital Resources for Learning
Mental health issues in college arise from pressure brought about by an intense academic calendar. In other instances, assignments are challenges such that they take all the time. A tight academic calendar also limits socialization. Part of the digital calendar should include highlights of digital homework resources like apps and gadgets that make assignments easier. This approach helps to tackle mental health challenges from the roots instead of focusing on side effects. In fact, this will provide a permanent solution to most of the problems.
Use of the Digital Space for Entertainment
Mental health challenges result from too much pressure in college at a personal level and regarding academic work. Lockdown and increased uptake of digital learning leave students with reduced socialization and entertainment options. Digital platforms step in with numerous games, puzzles, and educational quizzes for entertainment and learning. By relieving pressure, students have an easier time, helping them to avoid mental health challenges.
Digital infrastructure offers numerous opportunities to tackle mental health. An evaluation of the resources available will reveal the opportunities available for students, institutions, and counselors. When embraced, the digital space will help in tackling mental health issues.