Obtaining higher education is an exciting accomplishment that anyone should be proud of. Nothing worth it in life comes easy, though. As an adult, juggling work, home, and school is a balance that isn’t easy to maintain. Getting assignments in on time while managing other responsibilities can quickly lead to stress. Studies have linked heightened stress and mental health in areas like addiction, anxiety, and many more mental health concerns.
Avalon Malibu is a nationally recognized luxury mental health treatment provider specializing in conditions ranging from anxiety to phobias and addiction and mental health recovery. We welcome all walks of life and strive to make every client’s experience fully customized and full of healing. By focusing on healing the mind, body, and spirit, we take a full-circle approach to every treatment plan.
Stress: How It Connects to Higher Education
Whether you are fresh out of high school or are aiming to achieve a degree years later, college can be a bit of a culture shock. In many cases, the adult learner is not just a student. They also have a full-time career and a family at home. There is an immense amount of pressure when you are trying to excel in school, do well at work, and maintain a happy household.
College alone, without anything added, can present a lot of stress on a student. Studies indicate that the main stress factors for most students are as follows.
- Large academic class load
- Extensive study hours
- Time management
- Coursework competition
- Financial issues
- Pressure from family or loved ones
- Adapting to a new environment
These stressors do not take away from the value of higher education. However, it is important to put your mental health first. Whether you are solely a student or are wearing multiple ”hats” in your life, understanding the risks that stress can cause is essential to combat it effectively.
The Link Between Stress and Mental Health
Scientists have studied stress and its effects on the body for many years. While the genetic makeup of a person can play an important role in the development of mental health disorders, it is not the only cause.
Studies have found a distinct link between long-term stress exposure and conditions like depression and anxiety. When either disorder is ignored or left untreated, both can escalate and lead to more serious concerns.
The Physical Consequences
Stress doesn’t just affect your mental health, your physical health is also put at risk. Studies show that recurring stress can result in physical alterations to the structure of a person’s brain. This can create changes to the individual’s automatic reactions to stress, cognition, and even memory.
In addition to changes in the brain, heightened allergies and a lower immune system are other side effects that can be associated with stress. Chronic stress can even lead to cardiovascular complications, high blood pressure, trouble in the digestion system, and gastrointestinal diseases. These are just some of the issues that stress can lead to.
Connecting Stress to Addiction
Stress and addiction are significantly connected. One study found that “high emotional stress is associated with loss of control over impulses and an inability to inhibit inappropriate behaviors and to delay gratification.” In working toward a degree through higher education, stress is virtually impossible to avoid.
Research links stress not just to alcohol addiction but to addictive behaviors as a whole. These may include eating disorders and even cyber addictions. Losing self-control from stress can spiral very quickly, resulting in serious conditions like alcoholism, anorexia, and even leading to addiction to drugs.
Drug addiction, like any addiction, often starts as an attempt to self-medicate. What begins as a way to “cool off steam” and alleviate stress ultimately leads to a higher tolerance for the substance. This results in the need for more of the drug more often to attain the same effect that the person initially received.
Addiction of any kind is very dangerous and affects every aspect of your life, from your mind and body to your finances and even your personal relationships with loved ones. The effects on your body can last even years after your substance use has stopped due to the brain changes previously mentioned. Treatment is needed for any addiction case.
Finding Balance and Mental Peace Through Avalon Malibu
Work-life presents challenges every day. Your personal life is not without its challenges either. When you throw schooling into the mix that is already pretty full, stress can quickly take hold. How can you juggle everything on your plate and maintain a healthy mind and body? How can you prevent your stress from leading to addiction or other concerns?
That’s where Avalon Malibu comes in. We can help you overcome the stresses in your life that may seem insurmountable. With our full-circle treatment modalities, you will walk away with a healthy mind, body, and spirit. You’ll earn that degree with a huge smile on your face and achieve all the best that life has to offer. So, why not start now?
Stress isn’t just linked to addiction and anxiety but to many other mental health concerns too. Because of the toxic nature of it, stress can have serious consequences on your mind and body. At Avalon Malibu, we can help people from all walks of life break free from their mental strains and live their lives fully and happily. This degree that you are pursuing will change your life for the better. However, don’t let your mind drown in the stresses of school and daily life. You can reach for the stars and achieve greatness, all while maintaining a positive and healthy mental state. Let us help you free your mind from stress and find balance today. Call (844) 857-5992.