Tackling Anxiety

October 31, 2023

Keley Smith-Keller

It’s just past the middle of the semester. And, while mid-terms have wrapped up, major projects are looming, roommate conflicts are surfacing, and the days are getting shorter.

These are just a few of the factors that can impact college student anxiety levels. According to recent survey findings from The Healthy Minds Network (2023), 36% of college students surveyed during the 2022-23 academic year met criteria for generalized anxiety disorder. Mount Marty student survey responses, collected during October 2023, show that 27.4% of respondents meet criteria for generalized anxiety disorder.

The American Institute of Stress says that “stress can have wide-ranging effects on emotion, mood, and behavior.” When stress is left untreated, chronic stress may develop and cause even worse physical symptoms or health issues. Knowing the symptoms and signs of stress will help you to create stress management techniques early.

Stress/Anxiety Symptoms

  • Stomach pain, nausea, or digestive issues
  • Headache
  • Insomnia or waking up frequently
  • Weakness or fatigue
  • Pounding or racing heart
  • Rapid breathing or shortness of breath
  • Sweating, trembling or shaking
  • Muscle tension
  • Irritability

According to the American College Health Association (Dennington, August 2020), there are steps students can take to address stress and anxiety:

  • Keep a normal routine
  • Maintain a healthy diet and good sleep habits
  • Take breaks, planning in down time each day
  • Stay connected with other people
  • Speak with a mental health professional if your stress or anxiety feels difficult to manage.


Counseling Appointments

Mount Marty University has two counseling options available to help students with anxiety – face-to-face counseling with MMU Student Counseling director, Keley Smith-Keller, or tele-counseling available through Virtual Care Group. Both are free for Mount Marty students.

To make an appointment with Dr. Keley Smith-Keller, campus counselor – contact her at keley.smith-

In addition, all Mount Marty University students now have access to free tele-counseling, crisis consultation and life coaching through the Virtual Care Group: www.thevirtualcaregroup.com/mountmarty



Dennington, A. (2020, August 14). Five coping strategies for stress and anxiety in college students. Timelycare. https://timelycare.com/blog/stress-and-anxiety-in-college-students/

HealthyMinds Network (2023). The Healthy Minds study: 2022-2023 data report. https://healthymindsnetwork.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/08/HMS_National-Report-2022-2023_full.pdf

Want more? See this TED Talk – College Stress to College Success: https://www.ted.com/talks/brad_smith_college_stress_to_college_success