Updated : August 1, 2022 3 mins read
Updated : August 1, 2022 3 mins read
Children and young people told us that they felt like civilian friends, teachers and decision-makers don’t understand their specific mental health and wellbeing challenges.
We listened and secured funding from the Armed Forces Covenant Fund to work with children and young people to make Your Mind Matters happen.
The information that we have put together is for informational purposes and should never be used as medical advice or instead of advice given to you from a health professional.
If you have any concerns about your mental health then you should always speak to a mental health professional or your GP.
We do our very best to put together information that gives you a good understanding of mental health issues and what can help but it is not intended as medical advice and we do not take responsibility that it is accurate or up to date at the time of reading.
Would you like to talk to us about anxiety?Contact us
You might have heard friends or family describing themselves as anxious, but what does this mean? Often described as worry, anxiety is a physical bodily function that makes us aware of potential danger. Think of it as your own personal warning system – we all have anxiety.
Anxiety, in its own way, can be incredibly helpful. We need anxiety to survive as it helps to keep us safe. Thousands of years ago, anxiety would have helped prepare us for hunting big animals (think sabre tooth tigers!) or engaging in life-or-death situations.
When experiencing this potential danger, our brain releases specific chemicals (adrenaline, noradrenaline and cortisol) throughout our body. Blood flows from our fingers and toes to our major organs, our breathing rate increases, our muscles tense and our pupils dilate.
We might even find that our thinking becomes narrowed to focus on the situation in hand. This all helps our body prepare to either fight (i.e. stand our ground) or flight (i.e. run away from the situation).
We can also experience a third response, called freezing. Freezing happens when or brain tells us we can’t fight or run away from the threat (i.e. rabbit caught in the headlights).
So whilst this was helpful when we were hunting or engaging in life or death situations on a daily basis, anxiety doesn’t know that we no longer need to be constantly on edge.
When we think about anxiety in modern life, we’re very unlikely to experience dangerous animals coming round the corner, but we are likely to miss our bus, be late for important appointments and have to sit exams.
Anxiety doesn’t differentiate between modern stress and the stress we used to experience, which is why it’s important to understand how anxiety affects our bodies and how we can reduce anxiety levels when we need to.
We have lots of downloadable resources to work through at your own time. Please use the arrows to scroll below and check-in regularly for new resources.
Get Help now
If you are concerned about your mental health, or if you have found yourself feeling concerned about someone else, you can:
Call 111 – NHS 24
Call 116 123 – The Samaritans
Call 0800 83 85 87 – Breathing Space
Text: ‘YM’ to 85258 – Young Minds crisis chat
If you think you are in danger of hurting yourself or other people, you should call 999 or present to your local A&E department.
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