Feeling anxious or stressed?

Feeling anxious is usually a perfectly normal response to worrying things happening around us.

We can all feel anxious at different times about our health, relationship or family problems, money concerns, or problems at work.

However for some people the feeling can become overwhelming and excessive. This can be felt as a constant general feeling of worry or a more sudden overwhelming sensation of panic, known as a panic attack or anxiety attack.

Coping with anxiety 

About one in 20 adults in Britain suffer from anxiety. It tends to affect women more than men and is usually characterised by constant and excessive worry about everyday problems.  If you or someone you know is struggling cope with high levels of anxiety, you should talk to your GP first. Your GP will be able to suggest some coping strategies, such as relaxation exercises, and may also refer you for counselling or cognitive behavioural therapy. In some cases, your GP might prescribe medication to help relieve some of your symptoms.

Panic attacks

Panic attacks can be frightening, especially if you've never had one before. It is an overpowering feeling of panic which exceeds a normal fearful response to something scary. Most panic attacks only last between five and 20 minutes. If you're having a panic attack, you might experience some of the following:

  • Increased heart rate
  • Sweating
  • Shortness of breath
  • Feeling of dread or feeling like you're dying
  • Churning stomach or nausea
  • Feeling dizzy or faint
  • Shivering/shaking/chills
  • Dry mouth
  • Numbness or tingling.

Social anxiety

It is very common for people to feel anxious in social situations. People with social anxiety may dread everyday activities that involve talking to other people, have low self-esteem, avoid eye-contact and be very afraid of criticism. Social phobia can make people feel very lonely and isolated because they avoid contact with others.

Counselling and therapies

Talking therapies such as counselling can help you think through your emotions and come to terms with any problems you are facing. Counselling can take place in a variety of different formats, including face-to-face, over the telephone or online, on a one-to-one basis or in a group. Richmond Borough Mind and Richmond Wellbeing Service both offer a range of therapies or you can find your own counsellor.


Getting help

If you are worried about your mental health, always speak to your GP first. They will refer you to a specialist if necessary.  


If you are having problems with feeling low, anxious or stressed and would like some help, the Richmond Wellbeing Service may be able to help you feel better.

Richmond Wellbeing Service
Address: St Johns Health Centre, Oak Lane, Twickenham, TW1 3PA
Phone: 020 8548 5550

Useful contacts:

Richmond Borough Mind
Address: Maddison Centre, 140 Church Road, Teddington, TW11 8QL
Phone: 020 8948 7652
Email: info@rbmind.org