Dealing with Depression and Bipolar disorder: Stress and student life

Bianca Gonzalez, TSV Staff Writer

Students deal with the daily pressures of getting good grades, maintaining a job, keeping up with house chores, paying bills, and maintaining a life outside of school and work. Some of these obligations, like paying bills and studying for finals, can become stressful and turn into serious problems if they are not properly taken care of.

It is important as students to keep stress under control to better manage our daily lifes and daily activities.

Students tend to be ignorant to the underlying symptoms of depression when they are going through issues in daily life, but there are also visual symptoms to keep an eye on. Being depressed is not just being sad from a broken heart, being depressed can lead to emotional and physical suffering.

“For adults it takes two years of symptoms to recognize that you are depressed and adolescents it takes one year of symptoms to recognize the depression.” said Elizabeth Llamas, counselor at the Health Services department on campus.

Students are expected to succeed, being in college and figuring your life out can be a stressful time in a persons life and can become overwhelming for some students. It is important to pay attention to signs of depression, and there are many ways for a student to evaluate whether they are actually clinically depressed.

“Some physical symptoms for depression can be oversleeping, overeating, and not eating enough,” Llamas said.

For someone experiencing a bad day or dealing with stress and anxiety, it could be helpful to talk your concerns out with a psychological professional. There are many students who go through everyday life with a heavy load of emotional problems. Discussing one’s emotions and stresses can help relieve tension for some people who can not seem to get out of a grey area in their life.

“Managing these stresses can be difficult but you do not have to deal with it alone,” said Beverly Muse, counselor of the Health Services Department on campus.

Many students feel that they might not want to talk to a stranger about their personal life and issues, but the best part of therapy is that it is a judgement free zone.

“One in four people will go through some sort of treatable mental health disorder, depression, anxiety, caused by a death or a breakup, since students have all those papers and homework and then finals due all the same week but that is why we are here on campus,” said Muse.

Depression and bipolar disorder are important to recognize and discuss because, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 64 percent of young adults who are no longer in college are not attending because of mental health related reasons. This is a big percentage. To think of all the students that miss out on achieving something as important as college just goes to show just how much of your life can be affected by depression and bipolar disorder.

If you or someone you know is depressed or thinking of suicide there are sources to help you:

San Mateo 24/7 Mental Health Crisis Numbers
Crisis Line (650)579-0350
Psychiatric Emergency Services (650)573-2662
Rape Hotline (650)692-7273

San Francisco 24/7 Crisis Numbers
Psychiatric Emergency Services (415)206-8125
Suicide Prevention (415)781-0500
Rape Hotline (415)647-RAPE