YHS Cares

York High School's dedicated website to pupil health and wellbeing.

Anxiety & Panic

  • Definition
    Anxiety is a word we use to describe feelings of unease, worry and fear. It incorporates both the emotions and the physical sensations we might experience when we are worried or nervous about something. We all know what it’s like to feel anxious from time to time. It’s common to feel tense, nervous and perhaps fearful at the thought of a stressful event or decision you’re facing – especially if it could have a big impact on your life. For example:

    Sitting an exam
    Going into hospital
    Attending an interview
    Starting a new job
    Moving away from home

    In situations like these it’s understandable to have worries about how you will perform, or what the outcome will be. For a short time you might even find it hard to sleep, eat or concentrate. Then usually, after a short while or when the situation has passed, the feelings of worry stop.
  • Signs
    Physical sensations;

    Nausea (feeling sick)
    Tense muscles and headaches
    Pins and needles
    Feeling light headed or dizzy
    Faster breathing
    Sweating or hot flushes
    Fast or irregular heart beat
    Churning in your stomach

    Psychological sensations;

    Feeling tense, nervous and on edge
    Heaving a sense of dread, of fearing the worst
    Feeling your mind is really busy with thoughts
    Dwelling on negative experiences
    Overthinking situations
    Feeling restless
  • Advice
    If you experience anxiety or panic attacks, there are many things you can do to help yourself cope;

    Talking to someone you trust
    Breathing exercises (Take time to inhale. It’s the simplest thing, but is forgotten in panic attacks.)
    Shifting your focus, distract yourself from the anxiety you are feeling (fiddle with toys like a puzzle or stress ball)
    Listening to music
    Reassuring thoughts
    Physical exercise
    Keeping a diary
    Eating a healthy diet

    Grounding Exercise - Look around you and identify and name

    5 things you can see
    4 things you can feel
    3 things you hear
    2 things you can smell
    1 thing you can taste

    This will help remind you of the present. It is a calming technique that can help you get through a tough or stressful situation.
  • Where can I get help?
    In school you can talk to the following people:
    A friend
    Your Tutor
    Head of House
    Miss Masterman – Pupil Welfare Officer
    Noreen Reid – Pastoral Mentor (Drop in sessions Tuesday & Wednesday during break and lunchtime)

    In the community:
    Talk to your parents or GP

    Childline (Free) 0800 1111

    NHS Panic Attacks
    Calm Harm