At this time of year, many students are suffering from exam stress and exhaustion.

Ryan and his mum came to see me last week, as a year 11 student mock exams were well under way and like many teenagers, Ryan was exhausted.  Since September, the school had increased the pressure to study and with weekends full of sports matches and no down time, Ryan’s body had run out of fuel.

Although there were no emotional signs of stress, sleep wasn’t a problem, although he said he sometimes felt too tired to sleep, appetite was the same, Ryan didn’t feel anxious or worried about the forthcoming year of exams, but his body was showing physical signs that it was under strain.

Ryan said his legs felt like lead, they literally didn’t want to move his body around and he generally ached all over.  He’d previously been to the doctors, who’d confirmed it wasn’t Glandular Fever, the obvious thought for most teenagers feeling unwell at this age, but still Ryan had struggled to get through a day at school since returning to the new term in September.

The picture Ryan was presenting with was that of the remedy Gelsemium, a remedy widely used for colds and flu, which has the mental dullness and aching body, which Ryan had come with.  I also gave Ryan a combination of Homeobotanical tinctures to boost his immune system, which had become compromised by the stress he was feeling.

Leaving the clinic room with a bag of remedies to take, Ryan was also reminded that he also needed to ensure his diet was full of good quality nutritionally dense foods and not just crisps and fizzy drinks.  With the majority of the immune system being based in the gut, the quality of our food significantly affects our body’s ability to fight illness.  Stress also has a detrimental effect on our immune system, so keeping ourselves emotionally healthy and letting others know when we are feeling stressed and anxious is important too!