BY DAVID GUTIERREZ
Some people believe that success in college depends only on effort and natural talent. However, in reality, there are many more factors, and health is undoubtedly one of them. In addition to affecting the quality of a student’s life, many medical conditions also directly or indirectly influence his/her academic performance. As a result, quite often it is not enough to simply try harder – the only way to achieve results is to deal with the underlying health problem. So which medical issues are the most disruptive for academic success? Let’s take a look.
Undoubtedly, depression is the most common health problem experienced by college students, with 39 percent of students reporting severe cases and 31 percent claiming to have seriously contemplated suicide. You should also take into account that those suffering from depression aren’t usually inclined to talk about their predicament, which means that the real numbers can be significantly higher. People suffering from depression have trouble functioning at the most basic level and find it hard to perform even the most basic activities, which obviously affects their ability to study. If you have any symptoms of depression (persistent sadness, unwillingness to get up from bed, guilt, lack of focus) – you should seek professional help as soon as possible.
Anxiety can be all consuming and limit your ability to deal with life challenges in a more productive way. Everyone has experienced anxiety to one degree or another. Hypnosis can be highly effective in overcoming a variety of challenges including anxiety and phobias. When guided into hypnosis, the hypnotherapist can access your subconscious to determine the underlying cause of your anxiety. Identifying the cause is critical to success in properly addressing anxiety. Within the subconscious, the individual is more open to suggestions from the hypnotherapist that can help overcome anxiety. In fact, many psychiatrists recommend hypnotherapy to their patients. “Eli Bliliuos the founder of the NYC Hypnosis Center describes hypnosis as “a natural way to program the unconscious mind to respond calmly and automatically to stressful or fearful situations”. He is a firm believer in the power and effectiveness of hypnosis for treating anxiety and phobias.
3. Excess Weight
More than a third of college students in the USA suffer from obesity or excess weight, and numerous studies show that it negatively affects their academic performance. Compared to their normal weight counterparts, overweight and obese students tend to have lower GPAs and show poorer results measured by other metrics. It is unclear whether it is a direct consequence of having excess weight or a result of other problems caused by it (social stigmatization, lack of self-confidence, depression, poor self-image, etc.), but one thing is for sure – it is one of the factors contributing to poor results of affected students. Proper diet, a healthier lifestyle, or, in more extreme cases, surgical procedures can help in addressing this issue (just take a look at a photo gallery of results).
4. Eating Disorders
We all heard about “freshman’s fifteen”, indicating the fifteen pounds students often gain over their first year in college due to disruption of their habits and lifestyle. As a result, over 90 percent of students report trying to control their weight through dieting, which often leads to the development of disorders like bulimia, anorexia and binge eating disorder. These not just negatively affect the person’s ability to study effectively, but can have genuine consequences, e.g., possibly leading to the development of suicidal tendencies.
Excessive stress and inability to cope with their suddenly increased responsibilities often lead to the development of insomnia, i.e., difficulty falling asleep (over 60 percent of students report such symptoms). Insomnia not only prevents you from falling asleep at night but also makes you sleepy during the day, which means that you cannot function at your top efficiency. Sleeping pills aren’t a solution – they can provide sleep of poor quality, and you will build up a tolerance to them eventually. It may be necessary to first deal with the underlying causes of insomnia: stress, poor lifestyle choices, lack of physical activity, etc.
Alcohol and drug use are a commonplace part of student culture: 25 percent of students report studying problems caused by their drinking habits, and about 21 percent are using illicit drugs. If one’s substance dependence grows to the level when it starts causing problems in everyday life, probably the only way out is to seek professional help, which isn’t what everybody is ready to do.
What do you think? What health issues do you believe to be the most dangerous for your academic success?
David Gutierrez has worked in the field of web design since 2005. Right now he started learning Java in order to get second occupation. His professional interests defined major topics of his articles. David writes about new web design software, recently discovered professional tricks and also monitors the latest updates of the web development.