Mental Health Days

Carley Hutson, Journalist

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High schoolers across the nation have begun to suffer from mental illnesses in staggering numbers. While they hurt on the inside, they can appear completely put-together on the outside.

 

Approximately one in five youths aged 13 -18 experience a severe mental disorder sometime in their high school careers, according to Child Trends. While a lot needs to be done to help this crisis, one helping hand could be offering Mental Health Days to students.

 

Not only will these days offer relief to the suffering students, but they will lessen the growing stigma surrounding mental illnesses.

 

If we begin to normalize the idea of taking care of your mind and body by allowing Mental Health Days, students would realize it isn’t a bad thing to take care of yourself.

 

“Young adults have a lot more stress now,” said Angela Ammunson, a counselor at Prairie High School, “There’s a lot of new pressure with social media, comparing themselves to the fake lives they see.”

 

To cope with the constant pressure, a day off could increase one’s emotional and physical health, as long as the day is used productively.

 

That being said, it would have to be treated like a sick day. Parents would call in, teachers would be understanding, and overall you’d do whatever you need to do to benefit your health.

 

A student wouldn’t be expected to go to school when they’re vomiting every hour so when the mental equivalent as such is occuring, it should be encouraged to stay home.

 

But it’s important to keep in mind what the day is actually there for. A few easy ways to increase your mental health is:

 

  • Do a face mask.
  • Take a walk/exercise.
  • Make a healthy meal.
  • Meditate or do some yoga poses.

 

Remember though, a Mental Health Day won’t solve everything and if you or a loved one is falling into a dark place, call 1-800-273-8255 for a 24-hour suicide hotline.