Take advantage of mental health resources


The Daily Illini File Photo

Students in a statistics class listen attentively to a lecture at the Lincoln Hall Theater on December 2, 2019.

By Mona Alrazzaq, Assistant News Editor

As a senior approaching the last few weeks of college, there are a range of emotions that you are probably processing. It is completely acceptable to feel lost or unsure right now, especially because we are still in the middle of a pandemic. Please remember that you are not struggling alone, and there are always resources available to assist you.
It is first important to note that, as cheesy as it sounds, you are not alone. This past year has not been ideal for anybody. This is not to invalidate or belittle your experience, but instead to let you know that others are struggling.
The world you are facing after graduation is not the same world that you came into college expecting it to be. This can be a strange concept to wrap your head around. The uncertainty that might come with the future is also hard for many people to deal with.
First and foremost, if you think you are experiencing anxiety or depression, make sure to speak with your doctor in order to figure out a treatment plan. Early treatment is extremely effective and can create find long-term solutions and ensure your treatment plan works for you.
In order to use University resources, the Counseling Center is currently providing Telehealth options where you can talk to a counselor over Zoom or over the phone. The following number can be used to schedule appointments at the Counseling Center: 217-333-3704.
If you are thinking about suicide, are worried about a loved one or want to seek immediate emotional support, please make sure to call the 24/7 National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.
In addition to creating a treatment plan with your doctor, there are other steps you can take in order to help you feel a bit better. Although these are not professional treatments, implementing them can be useful.
Try to focus on what you can control
Do something seemingly small, like cleaning your room or taking the time to read a book. Focusing on what you do have power over in times where everything feels helpless assists in reminding you that not all is helpless.
Stick to a sleep schedule 
Many people don’t realize the difference sleep makes in their daily lives and mental health. Attempt to aim for seven hours of sleep. If you are having trouble sleeping, try taking melatonin if you are able to.
Reach out to someone and have a conversation 
The natural boost that comes from having a conversation with a family member, friend or even someone kind on social media helps you remember that you still have a sense of support and encouragement.
Keep in mind that these times will pass, and you will learn to work through your struggles. Remember that the next chapters in your life might be uncertain, but that uncertainty isn’t always a bad thing. Be proud of yourself for always moving forward and making it through your college experience despite all your hardships.

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