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50% rise in student demand for #MentalHealth services

TalkLife Responds to 50% Rise in Student Demand for Mental Health.

The world’s leading peer support network for mental health responds to the 50% rise in student demand for mental health services and launches new platform.

Popular peer support app TalkLife makes a breakthrough in student mental health and today announces the launch of TalkCampus, a network that engages students to seek support for their mental health at any time, day or night.

The Institute of Public Policy Research recently reported that the rise in student demand for mental health services in the UK has increased by 50%. Over the past five years, 94% of universities have experienced a sharp increase in the number of people trying to access support services, with some institutions noticing a threefold increase. Of more than 1,000 student respondents, 75% did not seek help because they didn’t know where to find it, were too embarrassed or thought it was a waste of time. Universities are under pressure and student services are overwhelmed by the demands.

Students are a highly mobile population making it difficult to integrate between GP’s, and therapies available through university services have historically been brief. No student should ever struggle alone, however existing support services cannot meet this rapid increase in demand, nor can traditional services meet the unique requirements of the growing student population.

One undergraduate student stated ‘my mental health kept getting worse because of having to constantly retell my traumatic story to then only be told that a service couldn’t help my specialist need.’

One of the clear solutions to the lack of student mental health services is to offer digital support, however to date these online services come with the same problems we’re seeing in the offline health service world. The TalkCampus platform has been designed to bridge this gap at a time when a new solution is essential, and hopes to provide students with the 24/7 support they need with real time escalation via world first machine learning.

20 year old student Matt said ‘mental health is hard enough on its own but as a student, it becomes much worse. Some days I can’t engage with lessons or struggle to get out of bed which makes it harder for me to meet assignment deadlines and in turn brings the fear of failure. Having a place to share helps me daily as I get to help people in need which is a therapeutic benefit and it’s also helping me learn the skills I need to progress in my future job perspectives.’

The platform focuses on the value of social connection, talking openly and exploring feelings. It does this through peer support, an effective and evidenced mechanism to support people with anxiety, depression and addiction as well as many other mental health issues. Student support needs to cover a range of experiences from exam stress, anxiety, depression through to suicidal feelings, self-harming and eating disorders, and an instant response is a top priority to ensure a safe, effective and encouraging environment.

By overcoming the stigma and barriers that prevent many students from reaching out to existing services, their mental health will start to be recognised and suitably supported so no one has to suffer alone.

TalkCampus is available to universities across the globe. The TalkLife app is free to download on iOS, Android and Web and offers a 24/7 professional safeguarding team and Clinical Advisory Board of world leading experts in Suicide and Self Harm Research and Prevention.

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