The University of Bolton Student Services

Mental Health and Wellbeing

Resources brought together by the Life Lounge team


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Starting University is an exciting time for all of us, but we can also experience feelings of anxiety, isolation, stress and homesickness.

This section explores common problems students report in their first year of University and helpful information, advice and guidance about how to manage them.


Useful Information

There is a lot to take in at the beginning of Uni, it can take a few months to settle into it. Here you will find useful links and information you might need.

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Many of you will have moved away from home but might not think you need to change your GP just yet. We understand that this doesn't always seem necessary but at some point in the next few years you might need to speak to a GP and not be able to get bac to your home area. We strongly recommend getting a GP whilst you are here. At the bottom of this section is a list of Bolton GPs.

Use the links below to find a doctor, dentist, pharmacy, optician and more.

If you need help now, and you're not sure what to do:

  • Go to the NHS 111 online service (see link below) or call 111

If you think it's an emergency:

  • Find your nearest A&E (see link below)
  • Call 999


See the source image                               Finances

If you have queries about your SFE funding you may want to visit their page and log in https://www.gov.uk/student-finance-register-login.

If this still doesn't help, why not make contact with our Student Services team and link into the services they have. Please visit the Student Services finance section for more information about services and support available.

Many of you will have to manage your own bills and household budget for the first time. It is a tricky thing to do, especially when you are on a budget. It is a good idea to create your own budget plans so that you can avoid getting into debt. Visit Money Saving Experts for more information.

You might want to visit our financial management page for information and advise about budgeting. This section also includes information about services who could help if you find you are struggling to manage financially and have debt management problems. You may also want to speak to Student Services to see what advice, guidance and support the University of Bolton can give you at this time. Visit the Student Services finance section for more information.

At the bottom of this section is a list of Bolton Banks, it includes how to open an account.

                          Bolton                                                                              See the source image

New to Bolton and struggling to find your way around? Want to find out more about Bolton? Work your way through the links below and find out more about Bolton.  

Image result for socialising                                                  Socialising

Please follow current government COVID guidelines in relation to socialising.

Many of us have left behind friendship groups and activities when we move to University and we find it difficult to know where to start in building these things back up. If you are living in Halls or shared accommodation your housemates are often a great place to start, your course mates are too. Below you will find some other information that will help you find things to do or meet new people in the area with shared interests.

Bolton University Students Union isn't just about protecting Students rights, it is about meeting new people and enjoying yourselves too. They can help you in so many ways during your studies, they put on fab events, and have societies you might want to join too. Contact Details Tel: 01204 900 850 Email: info@boltonsu.com

Bolton is right on the Moors and full of interesting things to do in the big outdoors. Visit Bolton's Countryside page for information about what is on offer in your area, it includes groups you might want to join so you can meet new people who enjoy similar things too.

Interested in accessing local groups or maybe even volunteering to meet new people and build your CV? Visit Bolton Community and Volunteer Services web page.

Needs some inspiration? Visit TripAdvisor to find out more about what is on offer in the local area.




Homesickness  is something we can all relate to, it is a feeling of stress and anxiety when we miss people and places we know well. It is a very normal feeling that for some of us will go away as quickly as it appears. For others it will feel quite strong and overwhelming.

What can you do to manage Homesickness?

  1. Look out for your housemates and class mates. If you notice someone is withdrawn, quiet, upset speak to them. Tell them what you have noticed and plan an activity together (following current COVID guidelines). It is good to share how we feel, it can help us feel less alone and more positive that the feeling is normal, and can pass. You might want to suggest they access this resource guide, or if you are worried for them you may suggest they register with the Life Lounge Service. For some people with mental health conditions homesickness can be a trigger, if that happens to you register with the Life Lounge and let us support you. If you are already working with Mental Health Services talk to them and access their support.
  2. Keep yourself busy, if you have moved to a new town you will be settling there for the next few years. Explore the area, explore campus, continue or start hobbies. Keeping busy will keep you r mind occupied and help you create a new life for yourself at University. If you feel isolated you may benefit from completing the Isolation LEAP module which has information about how to cope. Id you feel isolated, reach out.
  3. Call home, but get the balance right. Keeping in touch with friends, family and care givers from back home is natural and important thing to do. Do it too much and you will become even more homesick, try and balance contact with your home area so your keeping in touch but creating that new life here too. Start by calling or texting every other day in the beginning and then it will slowly decrease as you begin to get busier with studies and social activities. Schedule in a visit a few weeks into term (look out for when reading week is) to give yourself something to look forward to, but try not to go home every single weekend otherwise you'll end up missing out on social activities at your university and on the chance of making new friends. If you can bring something from home to your new accommodation.
  4. Look after yourself, make sure you are eating well, exercising and getting sufficient sleep. All these things help our physical and mental health.
  5. Be kind to yourself, it can take time to settle. You might feel home sick straight away, the feeling much come much later. But know feeling homesick is normal. Try these steps, talk to people about how you feel and access support if you need to.



Andy King our Cognitive Behavioural Therapist has created this great video to help you manage anxiety around COVID and attending University including tips on how to manage the anxiety we may feel.

See the source imageNHS


Anxiety is very normal and something we all experience at different times, to different levels.    

It can be closely linked with fear, panic or worry, and everyone usually experiences some form of anxiety. It is particularly common around high pressured times or changes, like sitting exams or moving away to University. We can have the feeling of butterflies in our stomachs, feeling sick, sweaty palms and heart pounding and recover once the trigger has passed like before a date, or an exam or finding the Lecture Theatre on your first day. Anxiety can happen before good things and difficult things too. Some would argue we need anxiety to help us function at our best capabilities.

Anxiety disorders are different from every day anxiety. The psychological, emotional and physical symptoms linked to these disorders can affect how we live and become really difficult and upsetting. We may need support to manage our anxiety through medication or support of services and interventions like counselling or CBT.

This Anxiety section explores it in a little more detail offering you more information about services and resources available to you. You may benefit from completing the Anxiety LEAP Module which will help you develop coping strategies. If anxiety is becoming a significant problem for you access your GP for support, utilise the resources/services below or access the Life Lounge here at the University.

Through the Life Lounge, you can also access specialist services to support and promote your mental wellbeing.

The Life Lounge brings together specialist services, free for students to access, including:

  • Counselling Service
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) Clinic
  • Mental Health Advisors
  • Referrals to other specialist services, both within and external to the University
  • Drop-in support, events and workshops

The service is open to all current students studying at the University of Bolton and the service is completely free.





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Coming to University is a great adventure that many of us think about for years. But our confidence can really be affected by the sudden change in the way we study happens. Suddenly we are asked to organise our work, research all kinds of things, use all kinds of software or tools, and structure academic work in ways we have never done before.

This can cause significant stress,  distress and upset for students and sometimes significantly impact on our moods.

If you are finding your academic work to be a source of stress please speak to your personal tutor, they are here to support you.

The transition to Higher Education studies can be difficult, and we can be expected to learn and understand lots of new ways of learning and studying very quickly.

To help you out the University of Bolton has really helpful LEAP Modules MY ACADEMIC DEVELOPMENT, which covers lots of academic skills including research skills, academic writing and different assessment methods.

There is also a section to help you increase your digital skills MY DIGITAL LITERACY, this section covers many areas of IT you will need to get through your time here like TURNITIN, MOODLE, Emails and much more.

If you feel like you need a little more assistance in developing academic skills the library has created a really helpful Study Skills area.

UCAS also has some useful guides to common academic skills required at University, for example, how to present an argument in academic writing, and understanding exam questions.


Many of our students talk about Perfectionism as being a big problem for them and impacting on their mood, wellbeing, mental health and overall enjoyment of University life.

But what is perfectionism?

The Government of Western Australia's Centre for Clinical Investigations states that it broadly follows these rules:-

  • Firstly, the relentless striving for extremely high standards for yourself and/or others that are personally demanding.
  • Secondly, judging your self-worth based largely on your ability to strive for and achieve such unrelenting standards.
  • Thirdly, experiencing negative consequences of setting such demanding standards, yet continuing to go for them despite the huge cost to you.

If this makes sense to you, and you recognise this has become problematic we recommend that you access The Government of Western Australia's Centre for Clinical Investigations page for a helpful workbook and worksheets to help you address the problem and ease the stresses it causes.



Procrastination is our avoidance of doing something, putting 'it' off and sometimes doing other things instead! It is another big problem for many of us, particularly if we are perfectionists.

Check out this page and find information, workbooks and worksheets to help you manage procrastination so it no longer impacts on your studies and your wellbeing.


We spend around a third of each day sleeping. 

The amount and quality of our sleep impacts upon the time we spend awake. Poor sleep can affect or mental and physical wellbeing and vice versa. It is normal in times of stress, or anxiety for our sleep to be affected, however it can be quit problematic if that disruption becomes long lasting.

 Find out more in this section about how to gain and maintain a healthy sleep pattern.

There are lots of different ideas and thoughts about what can help our sleep. Holistic therapies or things that can help you relax can help you sleep better.

Many people use alcohol and drugs to help aid sleep but in reality this can increase sleep disruption and lead to increased feelings of low mood and anxiety.

You might also find it useful to have a look at other pages in the LibGuide, including our page on Mindfulness.