How to Transition to College

How To: Transition to College

Making friends, missing family and adjusting to new roommates are all normal parts of student life.
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Life is Stressful!

Unhealthy levels of stress can severely affect you in many ways — both physically and emotionally. High levels of stress can lead to headaches, muscle tension, sleep problems and anxiety. Diseases associated with stress are the leading cause of death in the United States and have been linked to coronary heart disease, stroke, migraine headaches, stomach and duodenal ulcers, colitis, asthma, and mental and emotional problems.

If you think you suffer from stress, Counseling and Psychological Services's biofeedback program may be right for you!

What is Biofeedback?

Biofeedback is the use of computer sensors to help you recognize the relationship between psychological processes and physiological changes within your body. With practice, you can learn to bring these processes under voluntary control and exert more control over your bodily responses to stressful events. For example, you may voluntarily warm your hands and feet, or slow and deepen your breathing to reduce stress.

How Are My Bodily Responses Measured?

Using a computer, a biofeedback technician will measure several biological processes: respiration, heart rate and blood volume pulse, electrodermal response and skin temperature.

  • Respiration: Both the number of breaths per minute and diaphragm expansion are measured via a tube wrapped around the mid-section, just below the rib cage and attached with a strip of Velcro.
  • Heart rate and blood volume pulse: A transducer is usually attached to a thumb or finger with a Velcro strip.
  • Electrodermal response: The amount of moisture or perspiration is measured with electrodes attached to two fingers.
  • Skin temperature: Skin temperature measurement is obtained by the use of a wire thermometer, which is taped onto a single finger.

What Will Take Place at my Biofeedback Session?

At your first session, a technician will attach instruments that will measure your responses. In addition, the technician will explain various exercises to aid your voluntary self-regulation. Some exercises that might be used are breathing, to relax and center your body; tense-relax, to control small changes in tension levels; autogenic training, teaching your body to respond quickly and effectively to verbal commands to relax; and visualization, where you might imagine yourself in a pleasant, comfortable scene.

How Long Will it Take to Relax on my Own?

  • Each person is unique. Most clients attend approximately six sessions, meeting once a week for 45 minutes with their technician.
  • Provided you do your exercises at home, within a few short weeks you will be better in tune with your body.
  • You will not only become aware of physiological signals, you will also learn to react to these signals so as to avoid stress, reduce tension and lead a more relaxed life.

How Do I Sign Up for Biofeedback?

Call (951) 827-5531 or stop by Counseling and Psychological Services to sign up for an initial assessment appointment. Afterwards, you will be referred to the biofeedback program. We are located in the Veitch Student Center.

Did You Know?

Counseling and Psychological Services does not provide academic advising. For academic counseling, call 951-827-3411.
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A Counselor On Duty is available at Counseling and Psychological Services weekdays, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
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All students who pay UCR registration fees are eligible for free Counseling and Psychological Services.
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Counseling and Psychological Services serves as a national test center for the LSAT and PRAXIS.
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Group therapy allows you to connect to others with similar concerns and to listen to shared issues.
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Couples Counseling is available for students and their partners or spouses.
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Counseling and Psychological Services has designed an online guide to help faculty and staff respond to distressed students.
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Counseling and Psychological Services staff includes licensed psychologists, marriage and family counselors, and pre-doctoral interns.
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Counselors are available by phone 24 hours daily by dialing 951-827-5531 or 951-UCR- TALK
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You can take an online assessment right now to see how you're doing emotionally.
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Everything you discuss with a UCR counselor is confidential unless it falls under the legal exceptions.
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Counselors are available for workshops and presentations, including weekly meditation classes.
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