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07 June 2018 Photo Supplied
Emotional safety during examinations

Mid-year exams have begun and with crunch time comes emotional upheaval. However, it is manageable and should not deter you from the end-goal of succeeding in your studies while maintaining high mental health standards.

“The exam period is a time when stress and anxiety levels are higher than usual. Stress can be positive and help you stay motivated and focused. However, too much stress can be unhelpful and can make you feel overwhelmed, confused, exhausted and edgy,” says Dr Melissa Barnaschone, Director of Student Counselling and Development at the University of the Free State (UFS).

According to Helpguide.Org: Trusted guide to mental & emotional health, “Mental and emotional health is about being happy, self-confident, self-aware, and resilient. People who are mentally healthy are able to cope with life’s challenges and recover from setbacks. But mental and emotional health requires knowledge, understanding, and effort to maintain. If your mental health isn’t as solid as you’d like it to be, here’s the good news: there are many things you can do to boost your mood, build resilience, and get more enjoyment out of life.”

For further details on topics including: Building Better Mental Health, Emotional Intelligence Toolkit, Benefits of Mindfulness, Improving Emotional Intelligence (EQ), Cultivating Happiness, visit the Help Guide. 

Dr Barnaschone has a few tips on how Kovsies can better approach academic anxiety during the examination period. Here is what she has to say:

News Archive

"Studies indicate disability, poverty and inaccessibility to healthcare are intricately linked " - expert opinion by Dr Magteld Smith
2014-12-03

Dr Magteld Smith

Programmes worldwide attempt to improve the lives of people with disabilities, but recent studies indicated that disability and poverty, as well as disability and the inaccessibility of health care, continues to go hand in hand.

In South Africa, and even in developed countries, research shows that people with disabilities achieve lower levels of education with higher unemployment rates, live in extreme poverty and have low living standards.

“To have a disability can therefore become a huge financial burden on either the disabled person, the family or caregivers,” says Dr Magteld Smith from the Department of Otorhinolaryngology.

She devotes her research to the medical-social model of the global organisation, the International Classification of Functioning, Disabilities and Health, focusing on all areas of deafness.

Furthermore, Dr Smith says it is more difficult or more expensive for people with disabilities to obtain insurance, because of the risks associated with disability.

Dr Smith also emphasises the inaccessibility and even unavailability of medical services or health care for people with disabilities.

“Services such as psychiatry or social services are often not accessible. When such services are available, it is not affordable for most people with disabilities.”

Dr Smith uses the example of a person who was born deaf:

“Doctors have limited knowledge of the different types of hearing impairments or how to read and interpret an audiogram. Very little understanding also exists for the impact of deafness on the person’s daily life.”

Dr Smith, who is deaf herself, describes the emotional state of mind of people with disabilities as a daily process of adjustment and self-evaluation.

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