If you think you might want to get help for anxiety, you might find it useful to learn a bit more about the condition first. This can help you understand what’s going on and what you’d like to be different.
When we talk about anxiety as a mental health condition, it can mean feeling worried or panicky even without stressful things (like exams or arguments) going on. It can also mean feeling so worried and panicky about things that it starts getting in the way of living your life. You can find out more about anxiety on the anxiety page or read about when anxiety becomes a problem.
Urgent help and people to talk to now
Some people might need help urgently – for example, because they don’t feel able to keep themselves safe. Other people might prefer to talk anonymously to someone about the different ways they could get help for anxiety to help them decide what to do.
Get help now has information about organisations that offer this kind of support, including what to do in an emergency.
Best For You partners with Shout to offer the NATTER text service. You can text NATTER to 85258 to access free, 24/7, confidential text support with a trained volunteer. We answered some questions about how this works in a blog about texting NATTER.
Help for anxiety through the NHS
The NHS offers support for young people who are struggling to cope with anxiety, fear, or panic. Depending on where you live, you might be able to refer yourself to a service that helps young people with their mental health, or you might need to make an appointment with a GP and ask them to refer you for support.
You can find out more about NHS mental health support for young people in north-west London (and how to access this support) on the Best For You website. If you live elsewhere, ask your GP how you can access help.
It’s OK to feel nervous about speaking to someone you don’t know about anxiety or other mental health conditions. You could check out a helpful resource called Doc Ready, which answers lots of commonly asked questions and helps you build a list of things you’d like to mention.
You could also watch Best For You videos with GP Dr Stephanie Slater, who answered young people’s questions about how doctors can provide support for mental health.
Other organisations that offer help
As well as support through the NHS, you might be able to get help for anxiety through your school or through local projects that offer things like counselling, mentoring, or art!
If you live in north-west London, you can find out more about the support near you on the Best For You website. If you live elsewhere, you could search online or ask your school or GP if they know any local organisations or projects.
Other things you can try
As you get help for anxiety, there are other things you can try as well. These might be especially useful if you have to wait a while, for example, for an appointment.
There are lots of wellbeing apps out there, and it can be hard to decide which ones to try. All of the apps in the Best For You app library have been tested to make sure they’re safe and trustworthy. If you’re not sure where to start, check out the top rated apps for anxiety or the apps Best For You has featured as apps of the month.
Kooth is a free, safe, anonymous online wellbeing community for young people. You don’t need anyone to ‘refer’ you. Kooth has content about wellbeing and discussion boards for supportive conversations. You can also talk to their online team about anything that’s bothering you. Kooth is available across London and in lots of other parts of the UK.
Finally, you could try making your own self-soothe box. They have other names, including coping, safety, and hope boxes. They’re not a quick fix for anxiety, but they can help people reach a calmer place where they feel more able to plan their next steps. Find out how to make a self-soothe box on the Best For You website.