There is no denying that international students have a wide range of possibilities when they study abroad. However, attending school in a foreign country, living away from family and friends, and, for international students, being far from home, culture, and speaking a different language, may all contribute to the stress.
Not dealing with mental health challenges can cause a burden on the academic workload and overall well-being. These tips can improve overall mental health while studying abroad.
Mental Health Above All Else
Being an international student comes with a variety of stressors, especially during the past couple of years of Covid restrictions and isolation. Between language barriers and culture shock, it’s important to provide them with the right tools to cope.
The stresses of academic life, tests, coursework, internships, work-study employment, social life, personal problems, and finances, will never go away. The impact on mental health was particularly tested during the pandemic and was added to the mix, as many are still recovering to this day.
How does it affect international students?
Whether you’re an international student or know someone who could be going through a rough time, it’s important to spot some potential stress-related behaviors and health effects can include:
- Severe nervousness
- Isolation or colder behavior than usual
- Trouble focusing
- Mood swings
- Increased or decreased appetite
- Lower motivation to study or participate in outings
So, what can be done?
Moving and Staying Active
Research continually demonstrates the advantages of exercise for mental health as it helps reduce stress and anxiety, increase endorphins, and enhance sleep. The stress levels and mental health of students who work out even the slightest improved.
Additionally, it can help students connect with others, get them out into the world, and lessen any feelings of loneliness and isolation.
Connecting to One Another
A helpful strategy for enhancing mental and overall well-being is social interaction. While living away from home and most probably your closest relatives and friends, students living abroad should still make social connections with both local and distant friends and family.
Asking for Help and Support
It might be the hardest step to make but asking for support can make all the difference. Using the mental health resources offered by the school or institution if any signs of anxiety or depression occur. Healing begins with sharing your difficulties with someone who has the skills to help you.
It’s crucial to be aware that there are tips you can use to support your own success and that there are numerous tools at your disposal to provide whatever help you might need.