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Supporting Your Teenager: Navigating Exam Stress During GCSEs

Exams can be a stressful time for teenagers, and as a parent or guardian, it's natural to want to support your child through this challenging period. With the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) exams being a pivotal moment in their educational journey, providing the right guidance and assistance is crucial. Equinox Counselling Services in Weston-super-Mare understands the importance of addressing exam stress and supporting teenagers through this significant phase of their lives.

teacher in front of blackboard with words exam
exam stress counselling

Understanding the Impact of Exam Stress

Exam stress is a common experience among teenagers, and its effects can be far-reaching. From sleep disturbances to changes in mood and behavior, the pressure of exams can take a toll on both physical and mental well-being. Left unaddressed, exam stress can lead to decreased performance, feelings of overwhelm, and even burnout.

Recognising the Signs

As a parent or guardian, it's essential to recognize the signs of exam stress in your teenager. These may include:

  1. Changes in Behavior: Look out for any sudden changes in behavior, such as irritability, mood swings, or withdrawal from activities they once enjoyed.

  2. Physical Symptoms: Headaches, stomachaches, fatigue, and difficulty sleeping are common physical manifestations of exam stress.

  3. Academic Concerns: If your teenager expresses excessive worry about exams, struggles to concentrate, or experiences a decline in academic performance, it could be a sign of underlying stress.

Providing Support

Equinox Counselling Services offers guidance on how parents and guardians can support their teenagers during this challenging time:

  1. Encourage Open Communication: Create a safe space for your teenager to express their feelings and concerns about exams without fear of judgment. Listen actively and empathetically to what they have to say.

  2. Promote Healthy Habits: Encourage your teenager to prioritize self-care by maintaining a balanced diet, getting regular exercise, and practicing relaxation techniques such as deep breathing or mindfulness.

  3. Help with Time Management: Assist your teenager in creating a realistic study schedule that allows for breaks and downtime. Encourage them to prioritize tasks and set achievable goals.

  4. Offer Practical Assistance: Provide practical support, such as helping with revision techniques, proofreading essays, or arranging tutoring sessions if needed.

  5. Stay Positive: Maintain a positive and encouraging attitude towards your teenager, emphasizing their strengths and abilities rather than focusing solely on academic outcomes.

Seeking Professional Help

If your teenager is struggling to cope with exam stress, it may be beneficial to seek professional support from Equinox Counselling Services. Our team of experienced counselors can provide valuable strategies for managing stress, building resilience, and enhancing well-being during exam season.

Stress During Exams - Counselling Services

Navigating exam stress during GCSEs can be challenging for both teenagers and their families. By providing understanding, support, and access to professional guidance when needed, Equinox Counselling Services aims to empower families in Weston-super-Mare to support their teenagers through this significant milestone in their academic journey.

For more information about our services, visit Equinox Counselling Services to learn how we can support you and your teenager during exam season and beyond.


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