The Impact of Exam Stress

Exam stress can take a serious toll on mental and physical health. Late-night study sessions and nervousness often lead to anxiety, nausea, and headaches, which are all commonly associated with exam stress.

How to reduce stress and anxiety during exams

To support students during exam season, many college campuses have started partnering with therapy dog programs. Therapy dogs can be a remedy for exam anxiety offering calmness and emotional stability.

Learn more about how Alliance of Therapy Dogs can help students during the frenzy of exam preparation.

Emotional Support To Overcome Exam Stress

Therapy dogs are more than a wagging tail and a lolling tongue – although we love that about them too! Not only are they adorable but they also provide significant emotional support during visits. Dogs can trigger the hormone oxytocin, also known as the “feel-good” hormone, reducing stress and anxiety. Their non-judgemental and comforting presence helps create a safe space for students to express their thoughts and feelings.

Therapy Dogs Reduce Stress Levels In the Body

The pressure of exam season can skyrocket students’ stress levels, which can lead to emotional turmoil and burnout. Therapy dog visits are a great opportunity to release some of this tension and destress. Petting a therapy dog can reduce blood pressure and decrease cortisol levels. This physical response can help raise a student’s mood and give them the boost they need to get back to the books for the rest of their exam period.

Therapy Dogs Can Provide A Distraction From Exam Stress

Staring at a textbook or computer screen for hours on end can become discouraging and taking study breaks to reset is known to help your overall retention. What better way to spend that break than petting a therapy dog? A therapy dog visit can temporarily alleviate stress and take students’ minds off their classwork. Plus, it offers an opportunity to get up and move, which is something they have likely not been doing much of during the exam period. By fostering a worry-free atmosphere, therapy dogs can help students leave their visit feeling re-energized, refreshed, and ready to go.

Therapy Dogs Can Encourage Social Connection

When our therapy dogs visit a campus, it helps bring people together. Their fun and furry presence encourages peer bonding, which creates a positive and supportive environment. 

Therapy dog visits could be a nice opportunity for friends to meet up if they have been busy studying. Or perhaps it is a chance to make a new friend, as students of all majors come together to pet the dogs. Either way, it is assured that a handful of furry friends will surely be there to help ease any worries. 

Recognizing the effects of exam stress on student health is essential. Schools can then develop supportive communities to help students thrive, including by offering resources like visits from Alliance of Therapy Dogs.

Are you interested in a free therapy dog visit for your educational institution? Contact our ATD office to learn more about how to arrange a therapy dog visit to your campus. Our dog handler teams will provide students with a wonderful experience that can help them overcome exam stress.