Stress can be overwhelming


The Mirror reporter

The 2016-2017 school year is barely one and a half months in and students at Stevens Point Area Senior High (SPASH) are already feeling stressed.

“I always have so much homework and so little time to do it,” junior Nathaniel Taylor said.

This is a popular opinion among many students. It’s not just the amount of homework, but the general anxiety that comes with being a high school student.

About eight percent of today’s U.S. teens suffer from some type of diagnosed anxiety disorder, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.

The cause of this surge of anxiety is due to increasing amounts of stress, pressure, social media and divorce that teens face.

“I would say that there is a rise in students with anxiety and I think it’s a lot of things. We have students who are really driven to succeed and have a long term goal which is incredible but somehow we’ve lost how to equip some of our students with some of the skills needed to manage their goals,” school psychologist Aimee Burazin said.

One of the culprits may be the rise of the digital age. Students have more to learn and an unlimited number of resources. This can be incredibly overwhelming.

Compared to the number of tests that students’ parents or grandparents may have faced the amount has gone up increasingly.

These tests include the SAT, SAT Subject tests, PSAT, ACT, IB, and AP exams which all amount to a lot of stress. A student is pressured to do so well on these tests that they sacrifice sleep, hanging out with friends and even sporting commitments and extracurricular activities.

The task of balancing a job, school work, maintaining friendships, being in a sport, getting enough sleep, volunteering, having other extracurricular activities and doing it all while trying to not have a mental breakdown is a handful.

“I remember being a high school student and the challenges you face when you are 16, 17, 18 feel like the end of the world and they need to remember to reach out when they need help,” Burazin said.

Whether or not high school students and elementary students should change school starting times has been considered and it, hypothetically would help reduce students’ stress.

Teenagers typically go to bed later than younger children yet their school times are much earlier. In the Stevens Point Area School District, the public high school’s start time is 7:35 a.m. while the public elementary schools start at 9:00 a.m.

If high school students could start school later they feel that they would do more homework and be more awake in class, resulting in them actually paying attention and doing better in academically.

“I’m always so tired. I often stay up hours after I should because of studying and I have to catch my eyes closing in class and it’s a struggle to stay awake,” senior Keelia Rogers said.

Trying to complete all of the following tasks while running on a low amount of sleep results in nothing being achieved at its full potential. All students should strive to be their best yet but with so many limitations that doesn’t always work out.

A lack of resources when it comes to getting help restricts students. Students either feel like no one cares, or that no one can help. Many think that everyone else deals with the same issues as them so therefore there is no point in asking for help.

A crippling fear of failure is a current mindset that a lot of millennials face. College is a goal some students pursue. For young college graduates’ the unemployment rate is at 7.2 percent.

“The thought of dropping out of high school and not going to college enters my head every once in a while due to all the stress I’m under. But then I realize that would cause even more stress for me so I’m trapped,” senior Morgan Frostman said.