14/08/2014 16:49 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

Primary School Children Turning To Cigarettes For SATs Exam Stress

Children are turning to cigarettes to get them through SATs stress

Primary school children taking their SATs exams feel under so much pressure they are turning to cigarettes to cope with stress, according to a shocking new study.

The Sun reports that research carried out by cereal manufacturer Kellogg's revealed that worried children were also trying to boost their performance with energy drinks.

The news comes as 10 and 11-year-old primary school children sit the controversial tests this week.

The study, which polled children who sat the exams last year, found that 43 per cent were so nervous about the tests that they were unable to eat beforehand, while 2.5 per cent relied on guzzling energy drinks to get them through.

But most staggeringly, one in 200 admitted they had not eaten at all, but had smoked cigarettes before going into the exam room.

A child psychology expert speaking on behalf of Kellogg's told The Sun that the children were not being supported through the exams.

"They're clearly not getting the vital emotional and practical support they need through a stressful time," said Emma Kenny.