UCL News


Health advice from UCL Student Support and Wellbeing

30 October 2014

Look after your health Student life is demanding and it can be easy to overlook your health and wellbeing.

Malet place walkway It's important to look after your health so that you can achieve your full academic potential and enjoy your time here at UCL.

If you have not registered with a GP, near UCL or where you are living, you should do this as soon as possible. Please do not wait until you feel unwell and need to access health services quickly. You can find out more information about registering with the NHS health centre located on UCL's campus on the Gower Place Practice website and other health advice on the NHS Choices website.

During the autumn and winter months common illnesses like colds and the flu can spread quickly in university environments. Communal student living can also bring certain health risks such as Meningitis, an inflammation of the membranes that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord, most commonly caused by viruses and bacteria.  You should have had a Meningitis C vaccine before starting university but if you are not sure please check that your immunisations are up to date with your GP and take some time to read the NHS advice for university students.

Link:  Meningitis Leaflet for university students.pdf

Although cases of Meningitis are extremely rare at UCL we recently had a case confirmed so please learn the signs and symptoms which can include fever, a severe headache, stiff neck, drowsiness or confusion, aversion to bright light, painful joints, nausea and vomiting, and a rash or red and purple spots or bruises that do not disappear when pressed with a glass. It is also important to know that the early symptoms of Meningitis are easily mistaken for something else, such as flu, or even a hangover but trust your instincts and if you suspect the disease seek medical advice immediately. 

Looking after your basic health needs by healthy eating, washing your hands carefully, knowing your limits when it comes to alcohol and getting enough sleep will all help to keep you well. During November UCL students will have the opportunity to register for workshops and presentations with Camden's Alcohol Services and the Sleep School, if you would like more information about these events or UCL's Student Support and Wellbeing services please contact studentwellbeing@ucl.ac.uk .

There is much information in the media about the outbreak in West Africa of viral haemorrhagic fever, caused by the Ebola virus.  The risk of contracting Ebola in the UK is extremely small, but here is advice for staff and students planning travel to, or returning from an affected area. Link: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/hr/occ_health/faqs/index.php#1