As a homeopath, and mother of a teenager studying for her final exams and college admission tests, I have the opportunity to see first-hand the power of homeopathy to help with exam-related stress and anxiety – and all that comes with it.
Like many teenagers, my daughter is undergoing extra classes, long hours of study and the emotional pressure and stress of the looming date of her exams. Studying has brought headaches, dry, itchy patches of skin in her knuckles, and anxiety around her performance. With homeopathy, I have been able to support her immune system with a good constitutional boost, which has kept her healthy, improved her skin, and reduced the frequency of her headaches. On an acute level, I have given her a remedy to hold and take for headaches from over-studying and a flower remedy (Cognis by Bach) to take if needed for anxiety and worry. She sailed through her mock exams healthy and well, and feels confident going into the Junior Cert in a few months’ time.
This was my daughter’s experience, but because homeopathy deals with each individual and their own expression of dis-ease, different children will need different support. For some teenagers, the exam-related stress goes right into their digestion with stomach pains, loose bowels, nausea, bloating and wind. For others, sleep becomes affected with insomnia, poor quality of sleep, restlessness, and nightmares. A very common complaint, which my daughter suffered, was painful and debilitating headaches from the long hours of study.
On an emotional level, for many teenagers the exams bring up low confidence and poor self-esteem as they question themselves and their capabilities. When left unsupported, these worries can carry over into other areas (sport, activities, and relationships) with the possibility of some teenagers reaching for stimulants to cope. Intervention, even short-term, in the form of counselling can be very appropriate if this arises.
Another area that seems to affect most teens during exams is a general depletion of the immune system with lingering coughs, colds, tonsillitis, and sinusitis, among others. While the long hours are taxing to the immune response, the stress also seems to have an impact as well.
Homeopathy can in many cases provide safe, gentle and effective support for both the physical symptoms (digestion, headaches, insomnia, low and weakened immune response) while also providing emotional support during the long hours of study and during the exam itself. Because the remedies are natural, both children and teenagers take them as they need support – which can be quite empowering to them, and reassuring to those of us who love them.