Letters: Looking after yourself at uni
However much you prepare and plan for university, something will inevitably fall through the cracks. One thing you should never sacrifice is looking after yourself, and there are some simple steps you can take to make sure you’re in the best shape for an extraordinary freshers.
Food is great, and subsequently looking in your kitchen cupboard and only finding an empty packet of 15p Aldi noodles is not.
Make sure that your cupboard and fridge is never so empty you have to pinch some pasta from your flatmates 3kg bag of penne from Asda.
Be the person people ask to “borrow” food from, because you won’t get through much of university unless you learn to eat enough for you to get through.
2. Register at the doctors
As a fresher, you will very soon become familiar with East Slope Bar. Opposite East Slope is a doctor’s surgery. To see a doctor, you need to be registered. You are going to inevitably get ill from freshers flu/ an STD / twisting your ankle coming out a kebab shop at 6am.
Fill in your details whilst you aren’t lying in bed with a hangover that you believe may kill you, so when the aforementioned occurs you can roll straight up to one of the daily drop ins without the stress of having to wait another 24 hours to see a doctor because you forgot to register.
You may very well want to have sex at some point. It’s fine if you do, and it’s fine if you don’t. But if you do pull an attractive stranger at Coalition, you should have some form of STD protection handy. And this goes for people of all gender identities: you’re all equally responsible. Condoms and dental dams are available for free all across campus. Do your genitals a favour and protect them.
If you forget protection, the pharmacy does free anonymous morning after pills and the doctors has two friendly looking buckets of chlamydia self-testing kits at the entrance.
4. Mental health
We all have a physical health and we all have a mental health. Both need to be looked after, and sometimes you will get ill with one or both regardless of how well you look after yourself.
There’s a free counselling service on campus and the doctors are notoriously good at helping people get the help they need. So if something doesn’t seem right for you, there’s loads of people on campus who can help out without judgement.
Make a friend who lives at the top of Brighthelm. You can use their washing machine for free, and their hill as a gym.
If that fails, walk around the hills behind Northfield, join the two campus gyms, go swimming at Prince George pool for £1 with activeUS, or in the sea for free, or join a sports society. Just keep moving now Stamner Court seems like a long walk, or the fresher fifteen weight gain may just become your reality.