School's in and so are mental health issues
With each school year, post-secondary students enter the exciting but sometimes stressful halls of CEGEPs and universities, and may not be ready for the toll school can take on mental health.
University of Quebec a Montreal student Julie Zacky is a leader of jack.org, a national network of young leaders changing the way people think about mental health.
The group surveyed a group of 15-27-year-olds about mental health and stress recently to find the causes that lead to mental health issues, and what prevents young people from seeking help.
Eighty-one per cent said the main cause of stress was academic pressure along with other predictable issues.
"We also had social media," said Zacky. "It was followed by a lack of time for self-care. Imagine if you're going back to school in a post-secondary institution where you want to do great in school, you want to have good grades, but you also want to have a social life, so maybe your self-care is going to get pushed aside."
Though many students find school stressful, often they don't seek help.
"The number one barrier was actually shame," said Zacky. "We do talk more about mental health, but there is a lot of shame still when it comes to actually seeking that help."
Also, many students do not know where to seek help.
The network is raising awareness and giving out tips to help those struggling such as investigating resources that are available on and off-campus.
"Another thing is to not be afraid to have that conversation with a professor or an academic advisor," said Zacky. "There are things in school, academic allowances that you're allowed to have if ever you're struggling."