Pressure of exams causing worrying levels of anxiety in students

Pressure of exams causing worrying levels of anxiety in students

By Rebecca Coxon

Around 3 million students will be sitting exams this summer but recent reports from ChildLine suggest concerning statistics about how young people are trying to cope with the upcoming pressures that accompany exam season.

The UK Charity Family Lives advises that parents need to support their teenagers through handling exam stress.

Suzie Hayman, spokesperson for Family Lives, said exams may cause "conflict in families [and] crises of confidence in young people about being able to manage". She also warned that it could "blight their future" if they do not receive the support they need to properly handle exam stress.

The ChildLine National Exam Stress Survey revealed that 96% of the 1300 who completed the survey felt anxious about exams and revision, with 59% feeling pressure from their parents to do well and 64% saying they have never received any support in dealing with exams.

The ChildLine website states that, ‘Worryingly in the survey results, some of you said you coped with anxiety by smokingtaking drugs and self-harming. You might feel that this is the only way you can cope with these negative emotions but it doesn’t have to be.’

The alarming statistics reveals that almost half of pupils say they have skipped meals, two thirds of those surveyed said they have had trouble sleeping and 14% said they have drank alcohol as a way of dealing with exam anxiety.

Last year the ChildLine base in London counselled 412 pupils about exam stress.

ChildLine has made a new short film about combating anxiety, which can be viewed below.

Please see our guide to conquering exam stress here.

Recent ChildLine campaign

 

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