destressing at exam time

Destressing At Exam Time: How To See It Through

Exam time is just around the corner, a time that can be extremely stressful for students. The pressure to do well is higher than ever, and whether you’re still at school or in university – it can be a tough time to get through.

While it’s important to study and work hard, it’s also important that you destress at exam time to help you see it through. Taking some time out now and then to relax and do other things will restore your focus and concentration and leave your mind refreshed – ready for those exams.

Mental health and students

Mental health amongst students has become an increasing concern in both the UK and overseas. Recent data from the Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention has shown that the risk of suicide is higher among university students, with more and more students disclosing mental health problems in recent years.

The positive news is that UK universities are looking to tackle mental health by offering more support and making it easier for students to come forward to discuss any mental health issues they might be facing. While the reasons for problems vary, the pressure to do well in a post-recession economy can make exam time the toughest to get through.

Destressing at exam time

If you’re feeling stressed during your exam period, you could benefit from trying some different ideas to help you relax and unwind. Some useful suggestions include:

Put the books down

Studying every minute of the waking day isn’t good for your energy levels and can make it difficult for you to take anything else in. Give yourself a break by going to meet some friends, go for a walk or spend time doing something else – like watching a film or TV show. So long as you keep the balance right, there’s no reason why you can’t have a break from the books now and then.


Exercise is important for your physical and mental health, and keeping up with a regular exercise routine during your exam period is a good way to relax. Exercise has been proven to boost your brain function, so if you’re dealing with a particularly tough challenge or question – take some time to go to the gym or go for a run, you might find it much easier to deal with upon your return.


If you’re spending most of your waking hours studying, then squeezing in a nap every now and then could help you to relax and give you the burst of energy you need. It’s important that you get enough sleep during exam time, so make sure you go to bed early enough to get your eight hours, instead of studying through the night.

Avoid eating junk food

It’s tempting to reach for the share-bag of crisps or ring for pizza when you’re feeling stressed, but stress-eating can lead to further problems while making you feel tired and sluggish. Instead of reaching for the junk food, a good tip for destressing at exam time is to eat healthily. Make sure you drink plenty of water and get fruit in your system – a smoothie packed with fruit makes for a good snack to keep your health in check. Your body will thank you for the health boost.

Getting help for mental health issues

If you’re feeling overwhelmed or struggling with your mental health, it’s important to talk to someone about your feelings. A friend or relative is a good place to start, while many universities offer counselling services to provide support to students. There are many student mental health resources available online offering practical advice and information on where to get help.

Take the time to destress at exam time to help you make it through this tough period. Your health should always be put first, so don’t be afraid to seek help if you’re finding it difficult to cope.