Driving and anxiety

Taking to the road for the first time can be an anxious time - whether you're starting your driving lessons, preparing for your theory or driving test, or you're about to set off on your first trip on your own after passing!

In a recent poll* we discovered that drivers aged 17-24 were much more likely to suffer driving anxiety, compared to older drivers – with 58% of the young drivers who answered claiming they had experienced anxiety behind the wheel in the last 3 months, compared with 42% of drivers over 24.

After years of learning in the classroom and taking written tests (which are often super stressful in their own right) learning to drive and taking to the road can be a completely new and intimidating experience - there's mirrors, gears and indicators to think about, making sure you’re in the right lane...not to mention worrying about what other drivers may be thinking if they're stuck behind while you approach your first roundabout with caution! 

It may be that you are suffering the jitters and need a few tips to stay calm, or you are suffering from a mental health condition that is affecting your confidence – so we've created this handy hub of information and advice to help ease your anxiety and give you the tools and confidence to feel awesome behind the wheel!

* Source of data was a poll with 289 respondents, hosted on Marmalade’s Twitter page, April 2017.

Coping with anxiety when driving

In support of Mental Health Awareness Week, which takes place 8-14 May this year, Marmalade have worked with young drivers and driving instructors to put together some advice to help young drivers cope with anxiety when driving - as learners, or new drivers.

How I managed my driving anxiety

Sometimes, hearing people’s real experiences can provide added re-assurance and show what steps other people took in a similar situation.

Driving with a mental health condition

Most young drivers will suffer some kind of anxiety when learning to drive or in the first few years of taking to the road. For most, it won’t affect your ability to drive – it is likely to be a matter of finding ways of coping with stress or fear of the unknown. If this is the case, we’ve created some top tips to help you manage anxiety while driving.

How to deal with anxiety

Stress and anxiety can affect anyone, at any time, but exam periods and preparing to take your driving test can be a time of added stress. First things first – you’re not alone! It’s completely normal to feel this way. We surveyed over 700 learner drivers and discovered that 90% were feeling anxious about exams, or their driving test – or both. Only 10% of those surveyed suggested they weren’t anxious about either.