Summer holidays might be on the horizon but there are exams to get through first meaning endless hours of revision for students of all ages.

Faced with reams of paper to shuffle and complex terms to memorise, it's all too easy to stay up late, fuelled by coffee and chocolate, or escape and hide in front of the TV, mindlessly gobbling junk food.

As revision time gets under way, make sure you bone up on the health basics so you can sail through studying and ensure peak performance in the exam room.

PREPARING FOR PRESSURE Tracey Williams, parenting expert for lifestyle website, says increased competition for university places means students face more pressure than ever.

While it's natural to feel a little nervous, she says some students may become anxious or depressed and feel unable to cope.

She says watch out for irrational panic attacks, being uninterested in the company of friends, loss of appetite, sleepless nights or being unable to get up in the morning and taking no pleasure in life outside revision.

THE BALANCING ACT GP Rosemary Leonard knows all too well what coping with studying teenagers is like her son is preparing for GCSEs and a niece is swotting up for her International Baccalaureate.

"My big challenge at the moment is stopping my son from snacking on chocolate all the time. But I was with my niece last weekend and to say she was moody would be an understatement."

She says keeping cool at exam time requires a balance between relaxation, sleep, studying and exercise.

EATING WELL Both experts emphasise the importance of a healthy diet, particularly during revision time. You should cut out junk food, eat lots of fresh fruit and vegetables and drink lots of water.

Rosemary says food is a popular form of procrastination for teenagers studying at home. When faced with piles of textbooks, it's tempting to graze from the fridge.

"Healthy meals are really important," she stresses.

"Try not to let them snack between meals because it's just another distraction.

Caffeine can help concentration but if you overdo it, you'll become jittery and unable to sleep or rest.

"There is some evidence that Omega 3 fish oils may help nerve function but I'm not sure whether it really makes a difference if you are eating a healthy, balanced diet."

She still suggests eating oily fish twice a week.

SLEEPING AND SWOTTING "Everyone has their own pattern when they work best but getting eight hours of sleep is very important,"

Rosemary says. "There's no point in working through the night quality revision is best."

TAKING TIME OUT All work and no play is not the way to exam success and Rosemary says taking time out will help your teenager cope with the pressure.

"Getting out and doing something really physical is very important, whether it's playing tennis, kicking a football around or having a game of rugby. It's good to get out there and have a run around or join an exercise or yoga class."

She says studying teens should get involved in some form of exercise every day if possible or at least every other day but she has good news for those who like relaxing in front of the TV.

"There's a lot to be said for just sitting down and watching your favourite show as long as you're not watching TV for hours."

If they're beginning to feel the heat, Rosemary recommends a few ground rules to stop it turning into a testing time for the whole family.

"Keep their behaviour within reason. It's OK to cut them some slack but if they are becoming anti-social, they need to be told."

If girls are due to get their period at exam time and they suffer from bad period pains, Rosemary suggests they see their GP and discuss ways to delay it.

For some students, the end of exams can be almost as stressful as revising because they panic about not having worked hard enough.

It's essential to keep positive and not worry. Rosemary says: "Don't beat yourself up if you think you've done something wrong, move on to the next one. Once they're over, put them behind you and don't get stuck mulling over them."

While finishing their last exam may be enough of a reward for some students, she suggests others might benefit from planning a treat to look forward to when the swotting is done.