Mental Health Care at College is Hard to Access
April 14, 2018
Young adulthood is a transitionary period in people’s lives. Individuals finish high school and set about on a quest in search for a purpose and place in life. Several factors can complicate a person’s journey to find a path in life that is in line with what they hope to achieve; mental health is one of those elements.
Late adolescence and early adulthood is a time when mental illness presents itself in the majority of cases; when conditions like depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder arise it is critical that help is accessible. Unfortunately, most individuals are unaware of the signs and symptoms of mental health disorders; which means they can convince themselves that that which is holding them back is something circumstantial. In some cases, the stress of heavy school workloads can cause mental strife, but that doesn’t necessarily mean there is a problem that needs to be addressed. In other instances, however, people struggling in school meet the criteria for a condition that must receive treatment.
Whenever a person can’t access the help that they need, they are at an increased risk of facing suicidal ideations. It is vital that every college provides mental health screening services so that professional help can come about before things get out of hand. Screening and treatment should be a primary focus at every college or university; and, for the most part, it is that the problem resides in the fact that students in need of help can’t get the kind of assistance they require at the vast majority of colleges. Even the most prestigious institutions fall short from the mark.
Accessing Mental Health Care In College
Every college offers some form of mental health support, whether that be counselors, therapists, or offsite referrals. Faculties understand what happens when students can’t access treatment. Left untreated, people living with mental illness will often resort to drugs and alcohol to find relief. It is no wonder why depression and alcohol and substance use disorders go hand in hand. So, everyone agrees that treatment is essential, but the rub lies in providing the level of care likely to bring about any progress.
Ivy League schools like Yale can offer students perhaps a more significant level of care than a public university; thanks in part to enormous endowments and colossal tuition fees. However, a survey of students shows that most were unsatisfied with campus mental health services, which is problematic for a number of reasons, particularly the fact that there has been an exponential growth in the quantity of students seeking care.
From 2016 to 2017, there was an 11 percent increase in students using Yale mental health services, according to Yale News. The school’s health department believes they will see a 15 percent growth this school year. Most of the students who took part in the mental health survey said they were less than satisfied, citing long wait times. Time is of the utmost importance when it comes to mental health care.
There are 27 clinicians working at Yale, which is currently home to 12,312 students (about 456 students per clinician), the article reports. If that seems like too many students per professional, it is; but consider this, that is five times lower than the average (2,080 students per clinician).
Co-Occurring Use Disorder Treatment
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