Find out about the different professionals that can support blind and partially sighted students at university.Find out more about 'The Professionals There to Support You at University'
Mental Health and Wellbeing: A Guide for Blind and Partially Sighted Students
For any university student, starting a new course, moving to a new area and meeting new people can be an exciting yet nerve-wracking time. If you are a blind or partially sighted student, these changes can bring about particular challenges and worries. For many the added pressures of a change in environment, such as orientating yourself around a new campus or getting used to new accessible tech, can lead to increased negative feelings of isolation, loneliness, anxiety or general low mood if things don’t go to plan.
To get the most out of and enjoy your time at university, it’s really important to look after your mental health and wellbeing and to be aware of the support available if you start to struggle.
This guide is aimed at blind and partially sighted students, who are at or thinking about starting university. It explores various themes that could have an impact on your mental health and wellbeing, such as academic pressures, loneliness, money worries and concerns about life after graduation. It outlines what support is available for students and includes links to helpful services and resources.
We also have some handy self-care tips to help you prioritise your well-being.
Check out the tips by clicking here or scrolling further down this page.
I’m currently experiencing a mental health crisis. What should I do?
If your life may be at risk or you do not think you can keep yourself or someone else safe from harm, call 999. A mental health emergency should be taken as seriously as a physical one. You will not be wasting anyone’s time.
If you think you need urgent mental health support or advice, please contact your local NHS urgent mental health helpline. You can find your local service via the following link:
Similar services are also available in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, you can find out about support in your area by calling 111.
If you would like to talk to someone at any time of day or night about anything you are struggling with, you can call the Samaritans listening service on 116123.
If you or a young person you know are not coping with life, you can call Papyrus’ HOPELINK phoneline for suicide prevention advice on 0800 068 4141, between 9am and 12pm, or text 07860 039 9637.
Tips for maintaining good mental health and wellbeing at university
Here are some top tips for things to try out that can help you to maintain a positive mood and benefit your wellbeing:
- Get out and about – sometimes if you’re feeling low it can seem easier to stay indoors but it’s a good idea to push yourself to go out as much as you can, even if it’s only for a short walk. Getting some fresh air and interacting a little with the outside world will help you stay connected to your community.
- Try something new – if you feel like you’re stuck in a rut and struggling to feel positive about things, try to find a new activity or hobby to take part in. This could be in person or online if you’d find that easier to start with. You never know who you might meet or if you could develop a lifelong passion for something new.
- Get creative – many people find that making or creating something leads to positive feelings and is a great way to express yourself. Why not try creative writing, journalling, a craft or baking something delicious!
- Try out mindfulness or meditation apps – there are lots of apps available that can help you maintain good mental health. Some apps may not currently be fully accessible, but they are worth trying. Headspace and Calm are two of the most well-known. Your university may offer a free or low-cost way of accessing premium versions.
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