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Anxiety Information

Anxiety is the body’s natural response to stress. It is a feeling of tension, apprehension, or fear towards something that has yet to happen. Common anxiety inducing experiences could be public speaking or presentations, meeting people for the first time, job interviews, exams, or the first day at college. Anxiety is considered a normal human response that helps us to stay safe where there are threats and alarms us in potentially harmful situation. For example, if there was a fire you would need to act fast to get to safety. Anxiety helps us to detect a problem and act fast. However, sometimes our brains make mistakes, and we feel fearful where there is no real threat. For example, feeling anxious about being judged while walking into a room  can make us feel socially threatened but is not likely to harm us physically. You can read more about the symptoms and types of anxiety in the dropdown menu below.


  • Types of Anxiety

    There are different types of anxiety including generalised anxiety, social anxiety, phobias, panic disorder, separation anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder. You can read more about the different types here.

  • Symptoms of Anxiety

    The symptoms of anxiety vary for each person, but common ones can be breathlessness, trembling, feeling frightened, restless, and increased heart rate. This article gives an overview of the signs and symptoms of anxiety, as well as the different types of anxiety. You can also use ‘Anatomy of Anxiety’ on Mind the Mind’s webpage as an interactive guide on how anxiety or panic might feel in your body.

  • Generalised Anxiety

    Generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) is common and can be a long-term condition. There are many treatments available for GAD including psychoeducation, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), mindfulness and applied relaxation, and medication. This section provides psychoeducational tools where you can monitor your moods, thoughts and feelings about your anxiety and learn ways to manage the symptoms of anxiety. Psychoeducation refers to the process of learning about your mental health and wellbeing and using skills learned to manage your mental health.

  • Websites for General Anxiety
    • MyMind offer information, resources and low cost/free online counselling for people in Ireland.
    • SpunOut is a youth information website run by youth. It offers information on a range of mental health topics including anxiety.
    • You can also access information on the HSE’s website about symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and self-help for anxiety
  • Recommended Reading for Generalised Anxiety
    1. The Stress Proof Brain (Melanie Greeenberg)
    2. The Worry Trick (David Carbonell)
  • Social Anxiety

    Social anxiety is a persistent and intense fear of being watched and/or judges by others. This fear of negative judgement can impact a person's social, professional, and educational life. Social anxiety can also cause difficulties in day-to-day activites such as going to the shop, meeting with friends, or attending classes. There are a number of treatments for social anxiety including cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), supported self-help CBT (Participate Programme), psychotherapy, medication, and suppport groups. Below you will find resources, tips and websites you can use to manage social anxiety. 

  • Websites for Social Anxiety
    • Meetup Ireland host many support groups for those experiencing social anxiety and hold these gatherings all across Ireland. See the link for the closest group to you (due to the COVID pandemic, groups and activities are being held online).
    • Social Anxiety Ireland provide information and support groups for those experiencing SAD.
    • See Aware’s website for an overview of supports available for anxiety.
    • Anxiety Ireland is a website with resources, information and help for those experiencing anxiety. They also run a 14 week group therapy based on principals of CBT.
  • Recommended Reading for Social Anxiety
    1. Overcoming Social Anxiety and Shyness (Gillian Butler)
    2. Diagonally Parked in a Parallel Universe (Signe A Dayhoff)
  • Self-Help for Anxiety
    • Grounding technique. This booklet guides through 5 step grounding exercise to feel calm.
    • 99 Coping Skills This interactive list and print out includes 99 coping skills and strategies.
    • Sleep Hygiene Tips. A one page PDF with tips for healthy sleeping.
    • Mind Full (Dermot Whelan)
  • Apps and Interactive Activities for Monitoring Anxious Thoughts
    • Fear Tools provides resources to help manage anxiety, phobias, and panic. It includes guided meditation videos and breathing exercises. 
    • Mindfulness coach provides gradual, self-directed training program to help you understand and adopt simple mindfulness practice.
    • Woebot is an interactive support for people experiencing anxiety/depression through daily check-ins and lessons to explore though patterns.
    • Mood Tools helps with mood tracking and gives instructions on skills and coping strategies
    • Stop, Breath and Think is a series of short activities to guide people through meditation and grounding for mindfulness and self-regulation. 
    • SuperBetter uses interactive games and self-care ideas for personal growth.
    • Breathing Gif is a simple breathing exercise guided by and animated visual aid.
    • Pixel Thoughts is an interactive, 60 second meditation tool to release bothersome thoughts.