What is anxiety?

Anxiety is a normal, human feeling of panic or fear. Most of us worry sometimes – maybe about money or family – and feel anxious if we have to take an exam. Once the time has passed we will usually calm down and feel better.

Anxiety can become a problem when you are not in a stressful situation, but you still have that worried or panicky feeling.

What are the symptons of anxiety?

You may start to feel a sense of unease, which may be worry or fear – you may not be able to describe exactly how you feel.
Anxiety can effect everyone slightly differently you may:

  • feeling nervous, on edge, or panicky all the time
  • feeling overwhelmed or uncertain
  • having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep
  • low appetite
  • finding it difficult to concentrate
  • heart beating really fast or thinking you’re having a
  • heart attack
  • having a dry mouth
  • trembling, or having wobbly legs
  • feeling dizzy or faint
  • stomach cramps / feeling sick /needing to go to the
  • toilet more often than normal
  • excessive sweating
  • getting very hot

If any of these symptoms are affecting your everyday life, it’s a good idea to share with someone you trust how you are feeling.

Self Help

There are a number of tools you can use when you are feeling anxious to help manage your symptoms:

Try breathing exercises to help you feel calmer

Progressive Muscle Relaxation can be useful to ease the tension you hold in your body when experiencing anxiety


Headspace (a free app – with the option to pay to ‘upgrade’ although it does look like you have to pay you can click past the ads to access free content)
Calm (a free app – with the option to pay for access to ‘premium content’ again it does look like you have to pay, or sign up to the free trial, but you can click past the ads to access free content)

Check out our apps page for other useful apps which are completely free

What support is available from the Youth Trust
  • Contact your school’s Designated Mental Health Lead and ask for a referral to the MHST.
  • Make a referral for support from the Youth Trust here
  • Parents and carers looking to support their young people with anxiety can book on to our Anxiety
    Information Sessions for Parents