Healthy TWU

Welcome back Pioneers!  To get your semester started off on the right foot, here are few tips to help you rock this Fall.
*BE ACTIVE
—Physical activity is important for physical and mental health.  Regularly engaging in physical activity is also shown to improve academics!  30 minutes a day is the recommendation.  Try picking up the pace between classes, parking further out in the parking lot, or taking the stairs.
—Get involved on campus.  Be active in student organizations.  For more information about student organizations, check out the TWU Center for Student Development.
*EAT WELL
—Fill up half your plate with fruits and veggies.
—Watch out for hidden calories in drinks.
—Drink more water!
*DRINK RESPONSIBLY
—Most TWU students who choose to drink do so responsibly.
—Binge drinking (4+ drinks in one sitting) increases the likelihood for risky sexual behaviors, violence, accidents, and not feeling so great the next morning.
*MANAGE STRESS
—Stress happens.  You are not alone!  Manage stress by exercising, eating well, and managing your time.
—If things become to overwhelming, be sure to talk to someone.  The TWU Counseling Center is great.

For more tips and tricks to help you succeed at TWU, follow us @HealthyTWU on Twitter and Instagram and at TWU Student Health Services on FB.  Good Luck Pioneers!

(http://www.cdc.gov/features/collegehealth)

Welcome back Pioneers! To get your semester started off on the right foot, here are few tips to help you rock this Fall.
*BE ACTIVE
—Physical activity is important for physical and mental health. Regularly engaging in physical activity is also shown to improve academics! 30 minutes a day is the recommendation. Try picking up the pace between classes, parking further out in the parking lot, or taking the stairs.
—Get involved on campus. Be active in student organizations. For more information about student organizations, check out the TWU Center for Student Development.
*EAT WELL
—Fill up half your plate with fruits and veggies.
—Watch out for hidden calories in drinks.
—Drink more water!
*DRINK RESPONSIBLY
—Most TWU students who choose to drink do so responsibly.
—Binge drinking (4+ drinks in one sitting) increases the likelihood for risky sexual behaviors, violence, accidents, and not feeling so great the next morning.
*MANAGE STRESS
—Stress happens. You are not alone! Manage stress by exercising, eating well, and managing your time.
—If things become to overwhelming, be sure to talk to someone. The TWU Counseling Center is great.

For more tips and tricks to help you succeed at TWU, follow us @HealthyTWU on Twitter and Instagram and at TWU Student Health Services on FB. Good Luck Pioneers!

(http://www.cdc.gov/features/collegehealth)

Study Tips, Preparing for Finals

Stress and study seem to go hand in hand and yet nothing makes retaining information harder than stress! So how do you prepare for finals, remain calm and most importantly get the results you want? Follow our tips of course…..

Prepare! Obviously the more we study the better we will do but it also helps to make plan for the months before exams.
•Break down the course in manageable parts for revision.
•Use summaries, notes, Mnemonics to help make the material memorable.
•Form a study group if you feel you’ll struggle to stay motivated alone.
•If you’ve fallen behind be realistic about what you can do in the time that you have left. Decide how best to use the time available.
•Break every 90min for 10-15 min. This allows you to recharge and return with increased energy.
•Take 10-15 min to relax daily. This means the effects of stress don’t have an opportunity to overload your mind/body.
•Studying all night before an exam is counter-productive as the lack of sleep will often mean concentration and retention is seriously reduced. It’s better to take 2-4 hours to review the material and get to bed early!
Maintain a regular schedule. Routine allows the body/mind to function to its optimum level so regularized sleep, meal times and study hours mean you get the most out of your day.
•Lack of sleep means we often only function at 50-70% capacity! It’s important to get enough hours of sleep and if possible to maintain a regular sleep pattern. For instance getting to bed at roughly the same time each night means that your body clock is maintained. This allows our body to work efficiently and aids concentration.
•Regular activity such as walking will help you sleep better, reduce stress and ultimately help you to study better.
•There’s always a temptation to eat on the run but a regular, balanced diet will support concentration and retention. Stopping for meals also allows you to chat with friends and take to relax during the day.
•Avoid drugs/alcohol! Though it may seem like a quick way to relax they can interrupt sleep and concentration and have a serious effect on emotional wellbeing.
•Use the support of family and friends. It helps to ground you and keep stressful time in perspective. This exam will pass and recognizing you can only do your best means you often perform better than if you’re overwhelmed with stress.

Test Anxiety

Test anxiety is the nervous response to upcoming exams. It can manifest as worry, fear, insomnia or struggle to focus.
As test anxiety goes unchecked it can begin to feel overwhelming causing real distress. We may actually perform poorly in exams as we struggle to focus and retain information. However with the correct support and approach test anxiety can be managed so follow this great presentation by the TWU Counseling Centre and banish test anxiety for good!!

http://www.twu.edu/downloads/counseling/Test_Anxiety.pdf

Many perpetrators of sexual assault are known to their victim and many victims experience emotional, psychological coercion to engage in a sexual act, where consent was not given. Northwestern University Women’s center describes consent as voluntary, positive agreement between the participants to engage in specific sexual activity.

Communicating consent:

•Consent to sexual activity can be communicated in a variety of ways, but one should presume that consent has not been given in the absence of clear, positive agreement.
•While verbal consent is not an absolute requirement for consensual sexual activity, verbal communication prior to engaging in sex helps to clarify consent. Communicating verbally before engaging in sexual activity is imperative. However potentially awkward it may seem, talking about your own and your partner’s sexual desires, needs, and limitations provide a basis for a positive experience.
•Consent must be clear and unambiguous for each participant at every stage of a sexual encounter. The absence of “no” should not be understood to mean there is consent.
•A prior relationship does not indicate consent to future activity.
Alcohol and drugs:
•A person who is asleep or mentally or physically incapacitated, either through the effect of drugs or alcohol or for any other reason, is not capable of giving valid consent.
•The use of alcohol or drugs may seriously interfere with the participants’ judgment about whether consent has been sought and given.

http://www.northwestern.edu/womenscenter/issues-information/sexual-assault/defining-sexual-assault.html

Many perpetrators of sexual assault are known to their victim and many victims experience emotional, psychological coercion to engage in a sexual act, where consent was not given. Northwestern University Women’s center describes consent as voluntary, positive agreement between the participants to engage in specific sexual activity.

Communicating consent:

•Consent to sexual activity can be communicated in a variety of ways, but one should presume that consent has not been given in the absence of clear, positive agreement.
•While verbal consent is not an absolute requirement for consensual sexual activity, verbal communication prior to engaging in sex helps to clarify consent. Communicating verbally before engaging in sexual activity is imperative. However potentially awkward it may seem, talking about your own and your partner’s sexual desires, needs, and limitations provide a basis for a positive experience.
•Consent must be clear and unambiguous for each participant at every stage of a sexual encounter. The absence of “no” should not be understood to mean there is consent.
•A prior relationship does not indicate consent to future activity.
Alcohol and drugs:
•A person who is asleep or mentally or physically incapacitated, either through the effect of drugs or alcohol or for any other reason, is not capable of giving valid consent.
•The use of alcohol or drugs may seriously interfere with the participants’ judgment about whether consent has been sought and given.

http://www.northwestern.edu/womenscenter/issues-information/sexual-assault/defining-sexual-assault.html

April is Sexual Assault Awareness & Prevention Month.  Women are particularly vulnerable and make up the largest group who are likely to experience sexual assault. 1:6 American women will be a victim of attempted or completed rape in their lifetime, resulting in 17.7 million women experiencing rape. This is in contrast with 3%, or 1:33, of men who experience sexual assault. Know the stats!

•Every 2 min an American is assaulted with the result there are 237,868 victims of Sexual assault in the US each year. 
•44% of victims are under 18 years and 80% are under 30 
•60% of assaults are not reported and 97% of rapists will never spend a day in jail. 
•2/3 of offenders are known to the victim and 50% of all assaults occur within a mile of the victim’s home. 38% of rapists are a friend or acquaintance of the victim. 
•15% of sexual assault victims are children. 
•93% of juvenile sexual assault victims know their attacker. 

It’s essential that anyone who feels they have been a victim of sexual assault access medical help as soon as possible, and avail of support and guidance in dealing with this traumatic event. 
Resources include:
TWU Student Health Services, 940-898-3826
TWU Counseling service, 940-898-2911
Project Rev, 940-898-2744

April is Sexual Assault Awareness & Prevention Month. Women are particularly vulnerable and make up the largest group who are likely to experience sexual assault. 1:6 American women will be a victim of attempted or completed rape in their lifetime, resulting in 17.7 million women experiencing rape. This is in contrast with 3%, or 1:33, of men who experience sexual assault. Know the stats!

•Every 2 min an American is assaulted with the result there are 237,868 victims of Sexual assault in the US each year.
•44% of victims are under 18 years and 80% are under 30 
•60% of assaults are not reported and 97% of rapists will never spend a day in jail.
•2/3 of offenders are known to the victim and 50% of all assaults occur within a mile of the victim’s home. 38% of rapists are a friend or acquaintance of the victim.
•15% of sexual assault victims are children.
•93% of juvenile sexual assault victims know their attacker.

It’s essential that anyone who feels they have been a victim of sexual assault access medical help as soon as possible, and avail of support and guidance in dealing with this traumatic event.
Resources include:
TWU Student Health Services, 940-898-3826
TWU Counseling service, 940-898-2911
Project Rev, 940-898-2744

Did you know that heart disease is leading cause of death for women in America? Every minute approximately a women dies from heart disease, and for a portion of these women the first symptom they had was a catastrophic cardiac event. 
This happens for a number of reasons…
•Women often ignore the warning signs
•Women don’t think symptoms they do have could be related to heart disease
•Symptoms can be different for women, and women are often more familiar with the symptoms exhibited by men. 
•Women will often avoid seeking treatment until there is a serious event which often means there is often more damage done as a result. 

So what is heart disease? 
Heart disease is when there is damage to the heart vessels and heart muscle most commonly caused by Atherosclerosis. We have vessels that supply the heart muscle with oxygenated blood essentially enabling the heart to pump effectively, Atherosclerosis occurs when there is a build-up of substances on the lining of these vessels. One of the substances commonly associated with atherosclerosis is cholesterol. If this build up continues then gradually the vessel narrows and in time the heart becomes starved of oxygen resulting in a heart attack. Some of these substances may also break away and travel through the vessels to the brain causing a stroke. 


Join TWU Student Health Services and TWU Health Studies this month as we promote heart health and raise awareness about heart disease.

Did you know that heart disease is leading cause of death for women in America? Every minute approximately a women dies from heart disease, and for a portion of these women the first symptom they had was a catastrophic cardiac event.
This happens for a number of reasons…
•Women often ignore the warning signs
•Women don’t think symptoms they do have could be related to heart disease
•Symptoms can be different for women, and women are often more familiar with the symptoms exhibited by men.
•Women will often avoid seeking treatment until there is a serious event which often means there is often more damage done as a result.

So what is heart disease?
Heart disease is when there is damage to the heart vessels and heart muscle most commonly caused by Atherosclerosis. We have vessels that supply the heart muscle with oxygenated blood essentially enabling the heart to pump effectively, Atherosclerosis occurs when there is a build-up of substances on the lining of these vessels. One of the substances commonly associated with atherosclerosis is cholesterol. If this build up continues then gradually the vessel narrows and in time the heart becomes starved of oxygen resulting in a heart attack. Some of these substances may also break away and travel through the vessels to the brain causing a stroke.


Join TWU Student Health Services and TWU Health Studies this month as we promote heart health and raise awareness about heart disease.

January is the start of a new year and brings an abundance of opportunity for change. Most of us start the year with hopes of change and set goals for better health, greater happiness and hopes for success.  Being able to set and achieve goals is an important skill that brings effective changes to our lives and helps us achieve success. Goals help us move forward in a positive way and recognize what we want and need in life.  Reaching a goal is a wonderful achievement and helps us build our confidence in setting and achieving other goals we may want to set in our life. It also boosts our self-esteem resulting in a strong belief in our own abilities. 

Tips for Goal setting 
•	Think of short term and long term goals. Prioritize what’s most important and differentiate between what you want and what you really need. 
•	Visualize success that is what life will be like when you achieve your goal. Putting up a picture to help you visualize this can make the goal seem more concrete. 
•	Write down not just your goal but also what’s required to get there. A map is useful as it allows you to see your progress and the realistic steps that will need to be planned. 
•	Focus then on the first step and make a practical, realistic plan to begin. 
•	Realistic plans for change take into account what’s practical, achievable and consider your current life circumstances. For instance there’s no point in saying you’ll go to the gym daily if it’s difficult for you to access a gym, walking daily might be more achievable. It’s important that goals challenge us but that they are not so difficult that it’s impossible to achieve our goals. 
•	Goals also need to be flexible in that circumstances and life can change so sometimes our goals need to change with them. Try to be creative as to how you can achieve your goals while dealing with the unexpected challenges life can bring. 
•	Know your own motivation levels and what works for you! For instance some people will achieve goals by using the support of a group while for others they will prefer the freedom of being self-motivated. 
•	Think in terms of what you’re gaining not losing. For instance if your goal is weight loss rather than focus on pounds lost focus on how you’ll feel as you achieve your targets. This helps to boost motivation! 
•	Take note of achievements and reward yourself! Though it’s important the reward doesn’t hinder your progress in anyway. For example if you are losing weight food isn’t an appropriate reward if it causes you to lose motivation. 
There are lots of aids to setting goals that can help you formulate your plan for the New Year. Make sure to make your goals SMART ones!

January is the start of a new year and brings an abundance of opportunity for change. Most of us start the year with hopes of change and set goals for better health, greater happiness and hopes for success. Being able to set and achieve goals is an important skill that brings effective changes to our lives and helps us achieve success. Goals help us move forward in a positive way and recognize what we want and need in life. Reaching a goal is a wonderful achievement and helps us build our confidence in setting and achieving other goals we may want to set in our life. It also boosts our self-esteem resulting in a strong belief in our own abilities.

Tips for Goal setting
• Think of short term and long term goals. Prioritize what’s most important and differentiate between what you want and what you really need.
• Visualize success that is what life will be like when you achieve your goal. Putting up a picture to help you visualize this can make the goal seem more concrete.
• Write down not just your goal but also what’s required to get there. A map is useful as it allows you to see your progress and the realistic steps that will need to be planned.
• Focus then on the first step and make a practical, realistic plan to begin.
• Realistic plans for change take into account what’s practical, achievable and consider your current life circumstances. For instance there’s no point in saying you’ll go to the gym daily if it’s difficult for you to access a gym, walking daily might be more achievable. It’s important that goals challenge us but that they are not so difficult that it’s impossible to achieve our goals.
• Goals also need to be flexible in that circumstances and life can change so sometimes our goals need to change with them. Try to be creative as to how you can achieve your goals while dealing with the unexpected challenges life can bring.
• Know your own motivation levels and what works for you! For instance some people will achieve goals by using the support of a group while for others they will prefer the freedom of being self-motivated.
• Think in terms of what you’re gaining not losing. For instance if your goal is weight loss rather than focus on pounds lost focus on how you’ll feel as you achieve your targets. This helps to boost motivation!
• Take note of achievements and reward yourself! Though it’s important the reward doesn’t hinder your progress in anyway. For example if you are losing weight food isn’t an appropriate reward if it causes you to lose motivation.
There are lots of aids to setting goals that can help you formulate your plan for the New Year. Make sure to make your goals SMART ones!

Anonymous said: I think I might be depressed and I'm not sure where to start to try and get better. Any advice?

First, know that you are not alone.  Depression is very common.  Actually 1 in 7 people will experience depression at some point in their lives.  Here is a list of common symptoms that might help you decide if you might be depressed or simply a little down.

  • Finding it hard to get motivated and feel interested in things
  • Wanting to avoid friends and everyday activities
  • Difficulty concentrating or making decisions
  • Losing interest in eating, or overeating
  • Losing weight, without dieting, or gaining weight
  • Finding it difficult to get to sleep, waking during the night, or waking too early and not being able to get back to sleep. Alternatively, wanting to sleep all the time.
  • Thinking about, or planning suicide
  • Having unpleasant, negative thoughts (like feeling guilty or that you are a bad or unworthy person)
  • Getting pains in your body or headaches that don’t seem to have any physical cause

You can also take an anonymous online depression screening to see if you have some of the symptoms of depression.

http://www.mentalhealthscreening.org/screening/txwu

Whether you are depressed or just feeling blue, it is important that you talk with someone. Each of the TWU campuses has a Counseling Center where you can receive 12 free sessions.  You can also visit Student Health Services on the Denton campus or see your own healthcare provider. 

Here is another good resource that might be of some help.

http://www.dr-bob.org/vpc/

By asking for help you are at good starting point to feeling better. 

Flu Season- How to protect yourself!

It’s that time of year again when we are at risk of getting the flu. Though we often think of the flu as a nasty experience that we suffer, the reality is that getting the flu means we are at risk of becoming seriously ill. This is particularly true for those of us with medical conditions that may worsen if we become ill. Symptoms of the flu generally include fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Some people may also experience vomiting, diarrhea, or respiratory symptoms without actually developing a fever.

The CDC suggests taking these steps that will help to protect you from the flu virus.

·         The flu vaccine is recommended for everyone over six months old. The vaccine is designed to protect you from the most common flu virus of the season and is administered by Student Health Services, your health provider or offered in designated clinics in your community and some pharmacies. 

·         It is very important that anyone who has an underlying medical condition such as asthma, heart disease, lung disease or any other complications to protect themselves by getting the flu vaccine. 

·         It is important to be aware that you may also need to take advantage of the vaccine if you live with someone who has an underlying condition or works in a health care setting where there is a risk of infecting others if you contract the flu. 

·         Minimize the spread of the flu by limiting your contact with anyone who is sick with flu symptoms. If you become sick, stay at home and limit contact with others until your fever has returned to normal for twenty four hours or more. 

·         Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough and dispose of in the trash. Wash your hands regularly with soap and water or use an alcohol based hand rub. Clean and disinfect surfaces that you are using to prevent the spread to others. 

·         If you do become ill, antiviral medication may be prescribed by your doctor to help shorten the time you are ill and help prevent more serious complications from developing.  Ideally, they should start these within two days of becoming ill and are particularly useful for people with the medical conditions outlined above or pregnant women. 

·         Finally if symptoms persist or your condition worsens seek medical help!

Flu Season- How to protect yourself!

It’s that time of year again when we are at risk of getting the flu. Though we often think of the flu as a nasty experience that we suffer, the reality is that getting the flu means we are at risk of becoming seriously ill. This is particularly true for those of us with medical conditions that may worsen if we become ill. Symptoms of the flu generally include fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Some people may also experience vomiting, diarrhea, or respiratory symptoms without actually developing a fever.

The CDC suggests taking these steps that will help to protect you from the flu virus.

·         The flu vaccine is recommended for everyone over six months old. The vaccine is designed to protect you from the most common flu virus of the season and is administered by Student Health Services, your health provider or offered in designated clinics in your community and some pharmacies.

·         It is very important that anyone who has an underlying medical condition such as asthma, heart disease, lung disease or any other complications to protect themselves by getting the flu vaccine.

·         It is important to be aware that you may also need to take advantage of the vaccine if you live with someone who has an underlying condition or works in a health care setting where there is a risk of infecting others if you contract the flu.

·         Minimize the spread of the flu by limiting your contact with anyone who is sick with flu symptoms. If you become sick, stay at home and limit contact with others until your fever has returned to normal for twenty four hours or more.

·         Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough and dispose of in the trash. Wash your hands regularly with soap and water or use an alcohol based hand rub. Clean and disinfect surfaces that you are using to prevent the spread to others.

·         If you do become ill, antiviral medication may be prescribed by your doctor to help shorten the time you are ill and help prevent more serious complications from developing.  Ideally, they should start these within two days of becoming ill and are particularly useful for people with the medical conditions outlined above or pregnant women.

·         Finally if symptoms persist or your condition worsens seek medical help!

Resilience

Resilience is how we adapt to change and overcome adversity. Resilience is not something we automatically have, it’s something that is developed through the experience of life, often developed as a result of experiencing loss, trauma and stress in life. 

Being resilient doesn’t mean we don’t experience any difficulties in life; rather we can meet challenges with skill and confidence. Overcoming challenge means we develop greater skills and confidence in our ability to cope. It’s often developed through the support of relationships. Loved ones act as a support network as we learn to support ourselves effectively. 

Resilience is associated with:  

·         The ability to make realistic plans and carry them out effectively. 

·         Having a positive view of self and confidence in personal ability and strengths. 

·         Have good communication and problem solving skills. 

·         The capacity to manage strong feelings and impulses. 

Strategies

Building resilience is a personal strategy we develop as we move through our lives. With experience, resilience will grow and develop. We all react differently to events and our past experiences and culture all influence how we cope with challenges in life. 

·         Make connections! Good relationships with family and friends help build resilience, particularly when we are able to accept their help and support when we need it. Being active in the community in which we live in and assisting others has been shown to help us build skills and connection. 

·         Avoid seeing crises as unconquerable problems. We can’t change events, but we can control how we interpret these events that happen in our life. Look beyond the present and understand that circumstances do change. Recognize the changes you are making even if they seem small. 

·         Understand that change is a part of living and that we may not be able to always get what we want/need. Sometimes we need to challenge ourselves to accept circumstances as they are and look at what we can change. 

·         Move towards realistic goals and recognize your accomplishments. 

·         Make definite decisions when possible. Avoiding these decisions only prolongs the discomfort and doesn’t address the difficulty in anyway. 

·         Look for opportunities to grow and develop. Our confidence and belief in ourselves is often strengthened when we overcome adversity. 

·         Nurture a positive view of yourself and develop confidence in your abilities to cope with life events.

·         Keep things in perspective; avoid blowing things out of all proportion! 

·         Maintain a hopeful outlook. Be optimistic and believe that good things will happen and that things can always change for the better. 

·         Take care of yourself and pay attention to your personal needs and feelings. 

·         Build skills to deal with stress and develop personal beliefs about what is important in your life. People with established beliefs tend to cope better with adversity. 

 

American Psychological Association 

 

Resilience

Resilience is how we adapt to change and overcome adversity. Resilience is not something we automatically have, it’s something that is developed through the experience of life, often developed as a result of experiencing loss, trauma and stress in life.

Being resilient doesn’t mean we don’t experience any difficulties in life; rather we can meet challenges with skill and confidence. Overcoming challenge means we develop greater skills and confidence in our ability to cope. It’s often developed through the support of relationships. Loved ones act as a support network as we learn to support ourselves effectively.

Resilience is associated with:

·         The ability to make realistic plans and carry them out effectively.

·         Having a positive view of self and confidence in personal ability and strengths.

·         Have good communication and problem solving skills.

·         The capacity to manage strong feelings and impulses.

Strategies

Building resilience is a personal strategy we develop as we move through our lives. With experience, resilience will grow and develop. We all react differently to events and our past experiences and culture all influence how we cope with challenges in life.

·         Make connections! Good relationships with family and friends help build resilience, particularly when we are able to accept their help and support when we need it. Being active in the community in which we live in and assisting others has been shown to help us build skills and connection.

·         Avoid seeing crises as unconquerable problems. We can’t change events, but we can control how we interpret these events that happen in our life. Look beyond the present and understand that circumstances do change. Recognize the changes you are making even if they seem small.

·         Understand that change is a part of living and that we may not be able to always get what we want/need. Sometimes we need to challenge ourselves to accept circumstances as they are and look at what we can change.

·         Move towards realistic goals and recognize your accomplishments.

·         Make definite decisions when possible. Avoiding these decisions only prolongs the discomfort and doesn’t address the difficulty in anyway.

·         Look for opportunities to grow and develop. Our confidence and belief in ourselves is often strengthened when we overcome adversity.

·         Nurture a positive view of yourself and develop confidence in your abilities to cope with life events.

·         Keep things in perspective; avoid blowing things out of all proportion!

·         Maintain a hopeful outlook. Be optimistic and believe that good things will happen and that things can always change for the better.

·         Take care of yourself and pay attention to your personal needs and feelings.

·         Build skills to deal with stress and develop personal beliefs about what is important in your life. People with established beliefs tend to cope better with adversity.

 

American Psychological Association