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The Current

Mental Health Struggles Don’t Have To Be Lonely

Hurting even when no one notices

Mental health swarms my age group.
I’ve both felt and seen what hurting mental stability will do to a teenager already trying to cope with the different twists and turns of school.
Because of all the emotions going through one teenager’s mind, it makes it hard for them to decipher what’s a normal thought or feeling from a dangerous one.
About 31 percent of kids after finishing middle school are diagnosed with some type of mental health disorder, the most common seem to be depression, anxiety and PTSD. Around 56 percent of high schoolers are, as of right now, struggling with their mental health, whether it’s slightly, moderately, or severely. A majority of kids suffering from some type of mental health problem will hide it away from both themselves and others. They see themselves as the problem or are ashamed of their thoughts and feelings.
What are Schools Doing to Help?
Currently, schools are taking more action into trying to help kids in the school as much as possible, by giving them safe spaces like our Bear River Wellness Center. Teachers becoming more aware of mental issues helps them to understand kids’ situations more easily, and then they can follow their next actions accordingly. Having a teacher understand the situation can help when a student needs it most. Schools can give kids and their families resources for community behavioral and mental health services. When schools are actively promoting student mental health and well-being, it can improve classroom behavior, school engagement, and peer relationships. These factors have been and continue to be connected to academic success.
How Students Can Reach Out
Students may feel as though they have no one or that if they did have someone they wouldn’t be understood. But there are always ways to reach out even when it may seem unnecessary. Even calling the Youth Crisis Hotline (800-843-5200) can help them feel safer. Students can also reach out to school counselors for support in a situation. Even if the counselor isn’t qualified, they can still introduce them to someone who is qualified to help their needs. Students will still always have access to support and to be heard, though. There’s always someone around to help.
Signs That a Student is Struggling
There are many signs that a student is mentally struggling, but every student will have a different mix of signals. The most commonly found signs of a student struggling are problems with concentration, memory, changes in appetite, feeling sad, empty, or worthless, loss of interest in things they once enjoyed, excessive worry, changes in sleep, problems with concentration or memory, and being irritable or restless. The student does not want to be near people or activities.
Only some students are going to have every single one of these signs, but they will likely have a mix of some of them.
What You Can Do
Students and teachers must treat their peers and each other with respect and kindness. The truth is, even when they can see someone struggling, they don’t know the situation that person is in. Just give caution to the people around you and always be willing to listen when someone needs to be heard. In the end, everyone’s feelings and thoughts are important. Being there for someone when they need it is probably the greatest thing a student or teacher can do. Remember to always be aware of others and don’t just jump to conclusions, and that hurtful words will stick with a person. Being aware of mental health is important and needed.

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About the Contributor
Ella Miller
Ella Miller, Staff Writer
Ella Miller is a freshman in Bear River High School who is focusing mainly on her future. She has an undeniable passion for her writing and reading. If you were to ask her who she loved most it would be her cat Django, who is now 7.
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