Whether it’s your first time on campus or you’re a seasoned college student, the start of a new school semester can be exciting, stressful and a little scary all at the same time.
Between finding classes on campus and fitting in with new friends, you may be feeling anxious about the upcoming semester. Keep in mind, new-school-year nerves are normal and there are resources to help you — including your Wellstar primary care physician as well as on-campus counselors.
While the COVID-19 pandemic may make your college experience look different this year, you can use your independence on campus to take control of your well-being.
“As you head back to college, your new freedom also means making important decisions about your health,” said Wellstar Pediatrician Dr. Andrew Doyle. “With new variants of COVID-19 on the rise, getting the vaccine is your best defense against the virus.”
“Be sure to follow other safety protocols on campus like the 3W’s — wear a mask, wash your hands and watch your distance — to keep yourself safe,” Dr. Doyle shared.
To help you start the semester off right, here are some wellness tips so you can take on the new year and live your best, healthiest life.
Study guide to stay healthy
From medical appointments to personal safety, follow our tips to prepare for college and prioritize your health.
- Take control of your health. Book your annual physical with your primary care physician at the start of the semester.
- Keep yourself safe. Get the COVID-19 vaccine and follow your school’s guidelines about the virus, such as social distancing and mask protocol.
- Lead by example. It can be hard to do the right thing and mask up — especially when your college peers may not be — but it’s important to follow safety precautions to make well happen.
- Make mental health a priority. Bring up any questions or concerns with your primary care provider and learn about mental health resources at your college.
- Stay organized. Use a planner or calendar to schedule classes, exams and study time to keep yourself on track.
- Set roommate rules. If you’re living with roommates, create clear rules for your space like noise levels, chores and when other friends are allowed over.
- Know your surroundings. Get familiar with the campus layout and where the security station or emergency phones are located.
- Use the buddy system. Stay alert on campus and walk with a friend when possible, especially at night.
- Protect yourself at parties. Never leave drinks unattended, whether you’re hanging out at a bar, party or other gathering with friends.
- Schedule in self-care. College can be intense. Make time for yourself to do things you enjoy for your mental and physical well-being.
Get ready for campus life
Heading to college can be a big transition, and you may feel anxiety about the upcoming changes, especially during a pandemic. But don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need help getting ready or adjusting.
Talking to your Wellstar is a great place to start, whether your concerns are about physical, emotional or mental health. Our health partners are here to support you and can connect you with specialists to keep you feeling well.
Book your appointment today, and be sure to bring up any questions or concerns you have with your doctor.