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How to Handle Exam Anxiety

Beat anxiety

Exam anxiety really is a thing!

In fact, plenty of teenagers suffer from it year in year out – often scuppering their chances to achieve what they’re capable of.

And although exams are designed to enable young people to gain qualifications, the very thought of an exam can lead to overwhelm.

Once that strikes, it can initially result in a series of emotional and physical symptoms. Later on down the line, your son or daughter might not even manage to sit their final exams.

So, exam anxiety is a real problem – one that shouldn’t be dismissed lightly or ignored. Of course, it’s natural to feel under pressure. But too much can negatively impact.

Luckily, you can mitigate the worst of these symptoms by putting an action plan in place.

Strategies to Reduce Exam Anxiety

It’s true to say that every child is different. Anxiety can be triggered by many situations…

So, rather than cover everything in one post, we will share some key anxiety busters that can make a positive difference.

Access SEND support:

  • If your child struggles due to a learning or mental health issue, speak to your school’s SENCo to discuss access arrangements
  • Extra time, in a room of their own, use of a reader or prompter etc can be arranged to minimise stress.
  • Approach school as early as possible to ensure specific support has been sanctioned by exam boards

Build healthy activities into the week:

  • Exercise and fresh air are essential to find balance and combat anxious feelings
  • Learn relaxation techniques from mindfulness to deep breathing exercises
  • Meet up with mates, pursue non-academic activities and hobbies, and arrange movie nights

Unpack confidence issues 

Negative feelings about a subject can escalate from tiny acorns, then grow into massive oak trees of worry!

Instead, it’s crucial to drill down into any catastrophising to avoid a whole wood of negativity from taking root… Try these options:

  • Have an honest, calm chat about which subjects are the major cause for concern, and start from there.
  • Then, itemise the main problems so that you know what you’re dealing with.
  • If preparation or time management issues have gone pear-shape,  there are plenty of practical ideas at your disposal to get on top of them.

Combat Exam Anxiety with Private Tuition

Many parents approach us at 1-2-1 Home Tutors at their wits end, unsure how to support their child with academic worries.

Fear not. We’ve a wonderful team of caring tutors and teachers here who are experienced at handling all sorts of anxiety issues.

One-to-one support can have a life-changing impact on a teenager’s fortunes, especially when anxiety comes from a place of low self-esteem.

Make a fresh start. Get in touch with us today…


Image courtesy of Very well Minds

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