Last year we saw a surge in the number of young people seeking help for exam stress. This time of year can be very stressful for students. Problems with teachers on top of worries about exams, revision, and coping with workloads, can leave students struggling under pressure and potentially cause arguments at home.
When your child is experiencing stress, they may be irritable and not sleeping well. Losing interest in food, suffering from headaches or stomach pains, worrying a lot and appearing negative or depressed are all signs that exam pressures could be stressing them out. The NHS say that it is completely normal for young people to feel nervous or anxious, and that it may be helpful for them to talk to someone - perhaps a tutor or a counsellor. If this is a route you decide to go down we have several qualified counsellors, with experience in this area, that would be more than happy to meet with you and see if they can help relieve some of the stress that your child may be suffering.
There are also a number of steps that you can take to help ease your child's stress and anxiety as much as possible:
Making sure they eat a healthy balanced diet.
Getting enough sleep. Cramming all night before an exam is usually a bad idea. Having an hour to unwind after studying can also be helpful.
Being flexible with chores around exam time.
Draw up a revision time table and making sure they have somewhere comfortable to study.
Encouraging exercise - this can help boost energy levels, clear the mind and relieve stress.
Don't add to the pressure. Be reassuring and positive, avoid criticism and keep things in perspective.
“If you’re finding it difficult to cope or things become too much, talk to someone you trust about the difficulties you’re facing. Most schools, colleges and universities have access to counselling services where qualified therapists are available to talk through your issues in a safe, confidential environment.”