The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The intersection of Bizzell Street and College Avenue on Monday, Jan. 22, 2024.
Farmers fight Hurricane Beryl
Aggies across South Texas left reeling in wake of unexpectedly dangerous storm
J. M. Wise, News Reporter • July 20, 2024
Texas A&M LB Taurean York (21) speaks during the 2024 SEC Media Day at the Omni Hotel in Dallas, Texas on Thursday July 18, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
A&M predicted to finish ninth in SEC football media poll, three Aggies earn preseason honors
Luke White, Sports Editor • July 19, 2024

Texas A&M football is expected to finish in the middle of the pack in the conference this season, per the SEC football preseason media poll...

Bob Rogers, holding a special edition of The Battalion.
Lyle Lovett, other past students remember Bob Rogers
Shalina SabihJuly 15, 2024

In his various positions, Professor Emeritus Bob Rogers laid down the stepping stones that student journalists at Texas A&M walk today, carving...

Chancellor John Sharp during a Board of Regents meeting discussing the appointmet of interim dean Mark Welsh and discussion of a McElroy settlement on Sunday, July 30, 2023 in the Memorial Student Center.
Analysis: Chancellor Sharp’s retirement comes with new dilemmas
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • July 2, 2024

Texas A&M System Chancellor John Sharp announced Monday he will be retiring on June 30, 2025.  A figure notorious in state politics,...

Software for stress

The+student+services+complex+at+White+Creek+consists+of+temporary+modulars+that+house+offices+like+Disability+Services%2C+Women%26%238217%3Bs+Health+Resource+Center+and+Student+Counseling+Services.
Photo by File

The student services complex at White Creek consists of temporary modulars that house offices like Disability Services, Women’s Health Resource Center and Student Counseling Services.

Student Counseling Services offers a biofeedback lab for students to understand how to manage stress and anxiety.
The lab utilizes a clinical version of the Alive software tool to understand a person’s biological systems. By analyzing the person’s breathing patterns under stress, the lab can recommend ways to manage stress triggers when they arise in daily life.
Michelle Morris, licensed professional counselor at SCS, said students can be referred by a clinician or self-refer by calling the SCS office and completing a registration form. The biofeedback lab which is typically reserved for an hour.
“You’re able to see your heart rate on the screen and kind of participate in different activities whether that’s workshops, they call it environment or games, and see how your breathing impacts your heartrate,” Morris said.
SCS Director Mary Ann Covey said the lab is another resource for students at the SCS to help them relax and understand the physiology of both stress and relaxation.
“The number one issue presented to us at the counseling center is anxiety, and that’s nationwide,” Covey said. “Trying to help students and connect with them where they are and give them a resource is what we’re trying to do.”
Morris said the lab teaches students to recognize signs of stress and use what they learn to help manage those symptoms.
“When we’re under a lot of stress and anxiety — and actually just generally in life — we have a tendency to breath more, not as smoothly as is optimal for the best functioning,” Morris said.
The overarching idea is to focus on methods of breathing in relation to stress. In order to do this, the biofeedback lab provides data on how a person’s breathing patterns change when introduced to stressful situations.
“If we are slowing down our breath rate and breathing more smoothly, then that helps us to function at more of an optimum level and were able to manage the stresses of daily life in a more effective way,” Morris said.
Bethany Smith, licensed professional counselor and assistant director at SCS, said she has had successful responses with students who use the biofeedback lab.
“I’ve found that students really can enjoy this mode of treatment,” Smith said. “It’s something they can do one-on-one and it’s very self-paced.”
Smith said the Alive software program contributes to this success because it helps teach students what they need in order to manage stress. She said the biofeedback lab can be used without a counselor but that the counselors are also available to help focus on themselves and their self-care, which with the breathing practices learned in the lab has been shown to make a difference over time.
Smith said the Alive software program contributes to this success because it helps teach students what they need to manage stress. She said the biofeedback lab can be used with or without a counselor, and the breathing practices learned in the lab have been shown to make a difference over time.
“I think that it’s a really cool thing that it’s pretty self-paced and students can really learn in their own time,” Smith said. “They don’t have to meet with a counselor to engage in the biofeedback and so it’s really kind of at their convenience.”

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Battalion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Texas A&M University - College Station. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Battalion

Comments (0)

All The Battalion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *