The end of the summer holidays signals back to school for many and the start of new beginnings as students leave for university, but the change in circumstances can bring mental health challenges.

UCAS has reported that 44.1% of 18 year old students have applied to continue their studies by taking university places, this is the highest number since 2019. Students are particularly vulnerable to mental health struggles as they're often living away from home and dealing with the stresses of adult life for the first time.

Holly Eggboro, Acting Strategic Lead at Mindsmatter suggests there are a number of things students can do to look after their mental health and ease the transition:

“There are some really practical day-to-day things that students can do to ease the transition into university life.

"Don’t feel guilty for missing home. These feelings are completely normal, it should ease over time as students begin to feel more comfortable in their routine and surroundings.

Talk to people. Sharing problems with fellow students, friends, teachers or family members can often offer a sense of relief, as it is reassuring to feel other people are experiencing similar feelings.

Be open to trying new things and exploring the surroundings. Spending time in the fresh air is proven to help with mental health and exploring a new city can help students feel more familiar and settled with their fresh surroundings.

Pack some home comforts. A pillow or photo frame are ideal small items which are easy to travel with. These items can offer comfort and promote happy memories.

Contact home and make plans to return home. Having future plans in the diary means having something exciting to look forward to and the opportunity to spend time with the people who know you best.

Finally if you or anyone you know is struggling to adjust please seek support.”

The Wellbeing Helpline and Texting Service is available Monday to Friday 7pm to 11pm and Saturday to Sunday 12pm to Midnight. This service is staffed by volunteers and those with lived experience, who can offer emotional support and talk about mental health and feelings of loneliness.

Contact the helpline by calling 0800 915 4640 or by texting Hello to 07860 022 846.

The Trust has also sourced a range of self-help guides covering a wide range of topics including anxiety, depression and low mood and sleeping problems

An app is also available on both Apple and Android devices - by searching LSCFT – self-help or just LSCFT – in the App store.