Skip to content

Study stress impacting students’ mental health, sleep and relationships according to new research by ReachOut

Study Stress

Youth mental health service ReachOut has released new data showing that almost 50 per cent of young people feel extremely or very stressed about study and exams, with similar numbers indicating that study stress is having a major impact on their mental health and wellbeing (46 per cent). 

The national survey of over 600 young people aged 16-25 years, conducted by ReachOut in August, also found that study stress was one of the biggest concerns of young people today, surpassed only by stress about the future. 

The data shows that study stress is having very real impacts on the mental health and wellbeing of young people across Australia – 75 per cent reported that they lacked motivation and 71 per cent reported changes to their mood as a result of stress about study and exams. 

The impacts of study stress on affected young peoples’ physical health and lives more generally included that 73 per cent had trouble sleeping, 42 per cent had to take time off work or study, 39 per cent experienced challenges within their relationships and 37 per cent experienced poor physical health and sickness.

Students indicated that the top three causes of study stress were worry about not being able to live the life they have planned for themselves (58 per cent), concern about how they will compare with other students (55 per cent) and stress about letting their family down (49 per cent).  

CEO of ReachOut, Ashley de Silva, said that the new data is being released in the lead up to Year 12 exams to encourage students to take a proactive approach to their mental health and to seek support. 

“ReachOut’s new data on study stress shows that almost half of young people in Australia are not only stressed about exams and study, but that the stress is also having a significant impact on their mental health, wellbeing, their physical health and their lives more generally.

“We know that some stress can help us get through difficult tasks such as exams but when that stress starts impacting our mood and other areas of our lives it can impact students’ mental health in both the short and long term.

“With Year 12 exams around the corner now is an important time to remind students to be proactive about their mental health as they work through these last few weeks of high school. Small actions like waking up at the same time each day, taking breaks during study sessions and staying connected to the people who are important in your life can make a big difference. 

“I also strongly encourage all students to seek help if study stress is becoming unmanageable for them. That could look like opening up to someone you trust, making an appointment to see your GP, calling a helpline or logging on to ReachOut,” he said. 

ReachOut has a range of support for students to help them manage exam stress, school and study including information, tips and online communities. 

Parents and carers can play an important role in helping their teens manage exam and study stress. For tips, information and support parents and carers can visit ReachOut Parents

Share this article:

Articles you might be interested in

Scroll To Top