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Conquering Math Anxiety Is Possible

Many, perhaps the majority of students experience an occasional problem understanding the intricacies of mathematics. A few students have intense performance issues related to the subject of math. Even if they know how to work problems, arrive at the right answers and understand all the formulas and equations, these students tend to freeze on tests related to the subject. Conquering math anxiety is possible using some tried and true techniques.

Math anxiety is not at all uncommon, and there is some good news. As long as math anxiety isn't caused by a more serious, underlying condition, such as a true anxiety disorder, overcoming anxiety over math is possible.

Unlike many other subjects where there are a variety of "correct" answers, math tends to be rather cut and dried. There isn't a whole lot of gray areas in this particular subject. The precision involved in it tends to give rise to math anxiety even in the most adept of students.

If math anxiety is an issue, there are things students and their parents can do to help.

Some educational experts suggest students with math anxiety do the following things to help themselves overcome fears of tests:

• Seek out help early. If a particular chapter or requirement is not making sense, students can avoid math anxiety by seeking out tutoring help early. Asking for extra help often provides just the right boost to overcome anxiety, gain confidence and perform well on tests.
• Avoid cramming. Math anxiety is often only compounded by cramming for exams. Instead of cramming, students are advised to break up their study sessions into small chunks. It is also wise to address problem spots as quickly as possible to lessen math anxiety.
• Take practice exams. This can help identify problem areas prior to a test and even help boost self-esteem. This is a great way to avoid math anxiety by showing a student that he or she can, in fact, get the answers right. Practice exams can also be quite beneficial in reinforcing formulas that might be needed for a test.
• Meditate. Deep breathing, self-affirmations and all out meditation prior to tests can help students overcome math anxiety by giving them the focus they need to excel. These methods can take a little time and practice to master, but many students find these techniques very useful.

Math anxiety is a concern for many students. A fear of failure on important tests is not at all abnormal. If math anxiety overcomes a person, persists or presents with physical symptoms, a more serious anxiety condition might be present.

Seeking professional help in this case might provide the necessary relief for a student to conquer match anxiety and achieve success in this rewarding and useful subject.

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