We have all had times when we feel nervous or scared of different situations.Your heart may be racing, you may have a hard time breathing and feel tightness in your chest, or even feel dizzy. These could all be signs of anxiety. Having a difficult time coping with these feelings is normal, but if they continue and cause issues in your daily life, you may need to seek help (CHMA Calgary, 2020).
Learn strategies to cope with your anxiety, such as breathing exercises, mindfulness, and visualization.
Learn strategies to manage your obsessive thoughts and behaviours.
Challenge your unrealistic and unhelpful thoughts using various strategies.
Learn strategies to manage your emotions during uncertain times.
A panic attack is a sudden episode of intense fear that triggers severe physical reactions when there is no real danger or apparent cause. Panic attacks can be very frightening. When panic attacks occur, you might think you're losing control, having a heart attack or even dying. Panic Attacks often are not triggered by anything specific, can be totally unpredictable and can happen at any time (Mental Health Commission of Canada, 2019).
Fear of having panic attacks can make them more intense, causing individuals to have anxiety over experiencing them again. This may be a sign of having something called Panic Disorder (CMHA Calgary, 2015).
Social anxiety is used to describe feelings of anxiety and fear that occur in response to social situations. Even the most confident of people can get a little anxious before a presentation, or when they’re meeting new people, but in social anxiety this distress can be so overwhelming that it feel’s as though it‘s difficult to cope. Often, that overwhelming anxiety is experienced when just thinking about the situation or remembering a previous event. You may also have heard the term “social phobia” used to describe these feelings (Centre for Clinical Interventions, 2018).
Avoidance & Safety Behaviours
Physical: Headaches, nausea, extreme body temperature changes, excessive sweating, shortness of breath, light-headedness or fainting, rapid heartbeat, dry mouth.
Emotional: Excessive feelings of fear, disappointment, anger, depression, feelings of helplessness, fear of failure.
Behavioral: Fidgeting, pacing, avoidance, substance use, or abuse.
Cognitive: Racing thoughts, going “blank”, difficulties concentrating, negative self-talk, feelings of dread, comparing self to others, difficulties organizing thoughts.
Expert tools and resources to help adults and children in Canada manage anxiety. This website has specific apps and podcasts dedicated to managing anxiety and can assist individuals in creating a personal anxiety plan. Information on how to cope with the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and information on how to locate local mental health professionals is available.
Support for information, education, and referral services provided.
Red Deer College Counselling Services
100 College Boulevard
PO Box 5005
Red Deer, AB T4N 5H5
Counselling Services Hours
Monday-Friday: 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
*extended hours on Wednesday until 6 pm
Closed Saturday, Sunday,
and all Statutory Holidays
Red Deer College recognizes that our campus is situated on Treaty 7 land, the traditional territory of the Blackfoot, Tsuu T’ina and Stoney Nakoda peoples, and that the central Alberta region we serve falls under Treaty 6, traditional Métis, Cree and Saulteaux territory. We honour the First Peoples who have lived here since time immemorial, and we give thanks for the land where RDC sits. This is where we will strive to honour and transform our relationships with one another.
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