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Health tips for students (Released: 8/21/96)

by Ken Ross, Office of University Communications.

STORRS, Conn. -- New college students can do a number of things to make their first year at college a healthier experience.

These suggestions come from Michael Kurland, director of student health services at the University of Connecticut. Students should:

  • Provide their campus health center with a complete health history in addition to the immunization records that are required by law.
  • Let the campus health service know of any chronic illnesses or conditions and allergies to food or medicine that could affect treatment in case of an emergency.
  • Bring any health problems during the term to the attention of the campus health service. Students who need help must make that known.
  • Inquire about special services. Many campus health centers (such as UConn's) offer programs for students with disabilities and support groups for students with such conditions as eating disorders or diabetes
  • Check to learn what kinds of services the campus health center offers and what kind of medical services are available in the community where the college is located.
  • Check with their own health insurance or their parents' health insurance to see what medical services will be covered for a student who is at school. For example, some insurance programs cover emergencies but not diagnostic or primary care services.

Kurland cautions parents that a student's on-campus health records are confidential, so the records cannot be released to the parents without the student's written consent.

He also acknowledges that the transition to college isn't always easy for students or conducive to good health. "You're away from home. You have an overwhelming amount of school work. You may also be working to help pay your expenses. And you're managing your own time and own life."

Here are steps he advises students to take to reduce chances they will become ill during the school year:

  • Get plenty of rest.
  • Get regular exercise
  • Eat right. Take advantage of nutritious dormitory meals. Don't skip meals.
  • Find ways to deal with stress.
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