An overwhelming 1,000 students have visited the UM Health Center to treat feelings of depression in the past year – a 50 percent increase from a decade ago, says Dr. Kahn, director and associate professor for the Counseling Center. A small percentage of these students have been referred to an outside source at times.
According to Kahn, college offers new experiences and challenges that prove too stressful to handle for many students.
Depression is most common between the ages of 15-24.
Last week, a free depression screening test was administered to students interested, with questions that were indicative of symptoms of depression.
Questions ranged from sleeping and eating habits to feelings of emptiness and irritability.
Adam Henry, a UM student, participated in the screening test and felt that it was a good idea overall since it informed the student body that there is a place to turn to where they can safely communicate.
According to experts, many different factors can cause depression.
According to the Counseling Center, the most common factors are missing family and friends, relationship break-ups, family problems and academic difficulties.
“During this time of the year students are very busy, and if they’re not feeling their best psychologically, they can’t perform their best academically,” Kahn said. “In order to help, these students may benefit from coming to our Counseling Center.”
“Depression is one of the most common disorders to strike college students, making it very important for one not to be ashamed to seek treatment,” said Andrea Gaynor, a staff counselor at the UM Health Center.
The Counseling Center offers individual counseling on personal and academic concerns free of charge to all students who have paid the university fee. The Counseling Center’s full-time staff consists of seven psychologists and three consulting psychiatrists.
There is a fee for psychiatric consultation and for medication prescribed. The price of medication prescribed varies on an individual basis depending on the student’s health insurance coverage as well as other factors.
Once psychiatric medication is prescribed, the student remains monitored by a consulting psychiatrist.
Regular appointments at the Counseling Center are available Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. To schedule an appointment, call the Counseling Center at 305-284-5511.
For more information, visit www.miami.edu/counseling-center.
Christina Asencio can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
IF YOU’RE FEELING BLUE
Here’s what to do:
1- Stay involved in activities and organizations.
2- Make academics a priority.
3- Keep yourself social – hang out with friends and family.
4- Do something nice for yourself -go buy a CD or DVD.
5- Exercise regularly and watch your favorite comedians.