From Jellycats to Vodka shots: Here are Lancaster students’ exam emotional support items

From practical items to the weird and wacky

Exams come with a lot of pressure and make us feel stressed. At the time of the year when sleep becomes sacred, showers become scarce, and all-nighters are a lifestyle choice, many students require a bit of a pickup to pull through.

The lead-up to exams can also bring up different emotions for everyone – excitement, stress, anxiety, and relief. Many students turn to emotional support items, hobbies, and even people to get them through the anxiety and stress that comes with exam season. We asked Lancs students what they rely on to get them through exam stress, here are some of the objects Lancaster students use for support during exam season.

Stuffed animals/plushes

One popular emotional support object used by Lancaster students is their fuzzy friends and cuddly cuties, from Jellycats to stress llamas, and rightly so. Whether you decide to name your stuffed buddies or not, they are often a favoured support system when you need that extra cuddle. Some of our favourites include:

Gareth the Pickle Cat:

Jeff and Heff the Jellycats

Flavia the Llama

Though of course, all stuffed animals are equal and we love them all the same.

Food & drinks

Everyone has heard the phrase comfort food. Whether sweet or savoury, we all have tasty cravings during exam season, including the classics: frozen pizzas, salt & vinegar crisps, ice lollies, chocolate, or an emergency chippy from Hodgson’s.

Some of us may even cook or bake to relieve anxiety and stress and make “support brownies and cookies.”


One student responded that they exercise and use the gym as their emotional support during exam season.

Studies have shown that exercising not only reduces stress and anxiety but can also increase our self-esteem. Regularly participating in physical activities can also improve the quality of life for people struggling with poor mental health. So, while not many Lancs students said they use the gym for emotional support, maybe a trip to the Sport Centre would be worth it.

Music & TV

Some responses we received included music, specifically “Bangtan music” and TV shows, including “House MD.”

Music, especially songs by your favourite artist or band, can often reduce the feelings of stress and anxiety brought about by exams. Moreover, it can also improve focus and progress during study and revision sessions. We all love a good banger, and clearly, Lancs students are no different.


Scientists have found that people who spend more time with family and friends are happier, physically healthier, live longer, and have fewer mental health problems.

Although some people may wish to avoid seeing their friends during exams, others feel more comfortable spending their free time surrounded by the people they like, with one student commenting that the “Fylde bar regulars” are their emotional support throughout exams.

Alcohol & cigarettes

Multiple Lancs students commented about using “cigarettes,” “alcohol,” “beer,” or “the vodka bottle” to help them get through exam season. Although we wouldn’t recommend this being the best idea to help with exam stress and anxiety, we definitely understand it.

Water bottles

Another response we received commented that colourful and creative water bottles often help students get through exam season, and are used by Lancaster students as their emotional support item.

It’s important to stay hydrated during exam season, as it ensures you will stay healthy during revision, but can also help with remaining focused and alert, increasing the ability to recall information. Not only this, but you can be the envy of everyone on B-floor of the library.

White Noise

One student commented they use their “hairdryer [to] help me concentrate” because it’s similar to white noise.

White noise contains all frequencies from the spectrum of audible sound in equal amounts and has been found to help reduce brain stimulation and anxiety levels. Honestly, this is a very smart approach and would be great for blocking out annoying housemates.


One student remarked “gel grips for pens” are their emotional support item for exams and are definitely one of the more practical items on this list.

Whether you have ordinary pens or are obsessed with having the cutest pencil case in the exam hall, stationery is essential during exam season. You may be worried about failing your exam, but at least you don’t have to worry about having boring stationery.

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