Studying and substance use / gaming / internet

When starting to study at a higher education institution, a new phase of life begins.

In this phase, it is more common to regularly drink alcohol and/or experiment with drugs. As a student, you often attend parties. Having a drink is considered normal, and saying no can sometimes be difficult, especially under pressure from others. You may also be curious about a substance or use it to relax after a stressful week of studying. Escaping reality for a moment, for example, by browsing the internet or gaming. In some cases, the use of drugs or alcohol can unintentionally become a habit, even if you didn't want it to. You may then inadvertently become dependent on a substance or habit.

  • What can you do yourself

    If you find that you cannot stop gaming, browsing the internet, drinking, or smoking weed, and you don't even realize that you have slowly become addicted, it is advisable to seek professional help. For support in finding professional help, go to your GP or ask for advice from the student psychologist.

    • Check out the online Student Well-being Platform on CANVAS - an internal UT information site with videos on topics related to studying and maintaining your mental health. It offers advice, practical tips, useful links, and exercises.
      The platform offers a module on 'Alcohol' and 'Substance (Ab)use'. You can find extensive information, tips, and self-help resources on alcohol and substance use.
    • Check which courses and training programmes are offered that can support you in maintaining your mental health. Make an appointment with the student psychologist for an intake in which an assessment will be made of your symptoms and what kind of help you need.
    • Information for higher education students with a support question:
      I study with an addictionexternal link
  • What support is available at the UT

    As a student with personal circumstances, you can turn to the various UT counsellors for study guidance and necessary provisions. They will work with you and help reduce obstacles as much as possible, and prevent or limit study delays caused by your circumstances.

    • If your dependence on a substance or habit is hindering your academic performance, talk to the study adviser of your programme. The study adviser will provide advice on course selection and assist in setting up an adjusted study schedule if your circumstances have caused study delay or to accomodate therapeutic treatment. The study adviser provides support in organizing necessary adjustments within your programme.
    • The student psychologist offers support for mental issues. During an initial conversation, the student psychologist advises on a suitable follow-up if you are studying with an addiction problem. The student psychologist provides support in finding professional help.
      Make an appointment with your GP or the student psychologist if you notice that your substance use or persistent habit is causing you to get stuck in your studies.
    • You can turn to the student counsellor for independent advice and (financial) support arrangements for study delays caused by your (mental) issues.
    • If you would like to make use of the facilities and arrangements, consult the step-by-step plan. Proof of your personal circumstances is required to claim facilities and arrangements.
  • Useful (self-help) resources
    Check out the 'Alcohol' and 'Substance (ab)use and Addiction' modules.
    Student Well-bing Platform
    An internal UT information site (on Canvas) with videos on topics related to studying and maintaining your mental health. It provides practical tips, useful links and exercises.
  • External support

    For more intense support, the student psychologist can help you find an appropriate referral. To use the external support offered by Mental Health Care (GGZ), you need a referral from your general practitioner (GP). The general practice treats mild psychological complaints itself, possibly in collaboration with a Practice Assistant General Practitioner (POH-GGZ). If a POH-GGZ helps, the general practitioner remains responsible for the treatment.

    The general practitioner can refer for help with psychological problems to a care provider within the basic-Mental Health Care (BGGZ) or to the specialized Mental Health Care (SGGZ), depending on the degree of problems. Payment for psychological help is included in the basic package of the health insurer. However, this only applies to students who have a Dutch healthcare insurance. If you do not have a Dutch healthcare insurance, please check the Health Care website and AON+ insurance terms

  • Useful websites
    • The Trimbos Institute - stands for a mentally healthy society in which people have as much control as possible over their own lives and feel connected to each other. This famous Dutch institute works to improve quality of life by increasing and sharing knowledge about mental health and the prevention of tobacco, alcohol, and drug (mis)use. They conduct research and offer guidance and support.
    • Drugsinfoteam (in Dutch)
      Expertise, information and advice on alcohol and partydrugs. You can ask questions in English.