Health and Wellness Topics of focus
Mental Health Awareness/ Education
Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood.
Over the course of your life, if you experience mental health problems, your thinking, mood, and behavior could be affected. Many factors contribute to mental health problems, including:
- Biological factors, such as genes or brain chemistry
- Life experiences, such as trauma or abuse
- Family history of mental health problems
- Positive mental health allows people to:
- Realize their full potential
- Cope with the stresses of life
- Work productively
- Make meaningful contributions to their communities
- Ways to maintain positive mental health include:
- Getting professional help if you need it
- Connecting with others
- Staying positive
- Getting physically active
- Helping others
- Getting enough sleep
- Developing coping skills
If you are experiencing thoughts of suicide or you are concerned for a friend, please call The Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK immediately.
For more information on mental health, visit The JED Foundation
Mental Health Screening Tool
How Are You Feeling?
Mental health is a key part of your overall health. Brief screenings are the quickest way to determine if you or someone you care about should connect with a mental health professional - they are a checkup from your neck up. This program is completely anonymous and confidential, and immediately following the brief questionnaire you will see your results, recommendations, and key resources.
To check in on yourself or someone you care about, complete this short and anonymous Mental Health Survey
CWU is proud to be a JED Campus
JED Focuses on:
- Helping schools evaluate and strengthen their mental health, substance abuse and suicide prevention programs and systems to safeguard individual and community health.
- Developing expert resources and create powerful partnerships to ensure more teens and young adults get access to the resources and support they need to navigate life’s challenges.
- Educating and equiping students, families and communities to know when and how to support others who are in distress or struggling with a mental health issue.
For more information on CWU's role as a JED campus, please contact Wellness Center (Wellness@cwu.edu) or (509) 963-3213
Sexual Health & Healthy Relationships
Coming up with a definition of sexual health is a difficult task, as each culture, sub-culture, and individual has different standards of sexual health. The Wellness Center believes that sexual health includes far more than avoiding disease or unplanned pregnancy. We also believe that having a sexually transmitted infection or unwanted pregnancy does not prevent someone from being or becoming sexually healthy.
Sexual health is the ability to embrace and enjoy our sexuality throughout our lives. It is an important part of our physical and emotional health. Being sexually healthy means:
- Understanding that sexuality is a natural part of life and involves more than sexual behavior.
- Recognizing and respecting the sexual rights we all share.
- Having access to sexual health information, education, and care.
- Making an effort to prevent unintended pregnancies and STIs and seek care and treatment when needed.
- Being able to experience sexual pleasure, satisfaction, and intimacy when desired.
- Being able to communicate about sexual health with others including sexual partners and healthcare providers.
For more information on building healthy relationships, visit the Love is Respect Guide to Healthy Relationships
For more information on birth control options, visit the Bedsider Guide for Contraception Methods
For more information on sexually transmitted infections,visit the CDC Sexually Transmitted Infection Information Page
You have access to STI testing on campus, for more information: CWU Student Health Services
For more information about safer sex practices, or to talk with a peer health educator, visit the Wellness Center in SURC room 139.
Do you or someone you care about need information or assistance with alcohol related issues? The CWU Wellness Center offers brief assessments, consultation, and alcohol education. All services are confidential and judgement free.
Contact the Wellness Center at 509-963-3213 if you have any questions about available services.
More Useful Links
- Take the confidential Alcohol e-CHECKUP TO GO to learn more about your drinking
- Take the confidential Cannabis e-CHECKUP TO GO to learn more about your cannabis use
- CWU Alcohol & Other Drug Policies
- CWU Alcohol & Other Drug Policies At-A-Glance (Brochure)
- College Drinking Prevention
- Drug Information from the National Institute of Drug Abuse
- Alcoholics Anonymous
- Alternatives to A.A.: SmartRecovery
Tobacco/ Cannabis/ Other Drugs Education
In our recent surveys, 7% of CWU report using cigarettes in the past 30 days and less than 10% report using e-cigarettes. If you 'd like to learn more, contact the Wellness Center to schedule a consultation to identify ways to stop or reduce your use of tobacco. You can contact us at Wellness@cwu.edu
The Great American Smoke-Out is one of many programs we facilitate to further educate about tobacco use and risks associated with it.
Do you or someone you care about need information or assistance with drug related issues? The CWU Wellness Center offers brief assessments, consultation, and drug education. All services are confidential and non-judgemental. If you would like to discuss substance use with a professional staff member, you can schedule an appointment by contacting us via Wellness@cwu.edu.
Our Peer Health Educators organize and facilitate programs around the risks of using festival, study, or recreational drugs. Information we provide includes how substance use can affect weight gain/loss, sleep patterns, abillity to focus, and other health outcomes. The Wellness Center provides education in a judgement-free and socially equitable way.
Body Image/ Nutrition/ Physical Activity
Eating a balanced diet is vital for good health and wellbeing. Food provides our bodies with the energy, protein, essential fats, vitamins and minerals to live, grow and function properly. We need a wide variety of different foods to provide the right amounts of nutrients for good health.
Cooking 101 is an opportunity for CWU students at any cooking level to learn how to modify recipes to create healthier versions of their favorite foods and learn basic cooking skills that will benefit them long after leaving Central. Each Cooking 101 has a theme. After preparing the food, participants can eat and share their food and take home the leftovers. Please bring your own container to take your food home. Cooking 101 is hosted at multiple times a quarter and lasts 2-3 hours.
Body image is how you see yourself when you look in the mirror or when you picture yourself in your mind. It encompasses:
- What you believe about your own appearance (including your memories, assumptions, and generalizations).
- How you feel about your body, including your height, shape, and weight.
- How you sense and control your body as you move. How you physically experience or feel in your body.
- Many of us internalize messages starting at a young age that can lead to either positive or negative body image. Having a healthy body image is an important part of mental wellbeing and eating disorders prevention.
- 36% of CWU students report physical appearance as causing distress in the last 12 months
The Wellness Center facilitates a program called the EveryBody Project. The EveryBody Project is a dissonance-based body-acceptance program designed to help people resist cultural pressures to conform to the appearance ideal standard of beauty and reduce their pursuit of unrealistic bodies. The EveryBody Project is supported by more research than any other body image program and has been found to reduce onset of eating disorders.
This program is open to all students including people of color, cisgender, female identifying, male identifying, non-binary, and transgender students.
- The EveryBody Project has been scientifically demonstrated to reduce body ideal internalization, body dissatisfaction, and unhealthy behaviors related to eating.
- The EveryBody Project builds community and helps groups of students develop a shared understanding and commitment to body acceptance.
- It is fun and you will leave feeling great!
If you are concerned that you or a friend might be struggling with an eating disorder, try an anonymous self screening tool
Why Physical Activity?
- Regular physical activity helps improve your overall health and fitness, and reduces your risk for many chronic diseases.
- Check out CWU Recreation for more information
Violence Prevention / PATH
The Wellness Center provides education regarding sexual assault, domestic and dating violence, and stalking through programs and campus wide initiatives. We collaborate with many offices and departments across campus and in the community to educate our students on different aspects of sexual violence.
Annual Prevention Programs and Initiatives
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month
- What Were You Wearing
- Hunting Ground film screening and panel
- Stalking Awareness Month
- The Clothesline Project
- Rock Against Rape
- Sexual Assault Awareness Month
If you are interested in hosting an event or starting a new initiative, or would like to begin collaborating with the Wellness Center, contact us at Wellness@cwu.edu
For more information on sexual violence, please visit our new website: PATH
This page contains links to websites outside of www.cwu.edu. The views and opinions expressed on unofficial pages of Central Washington University faculty, staff or students are strictly those of the page authors. The content of such pages has not been reviewed or approved by Central Washington University.