As a child, I had severe anxiety issues, and I had anxiety attacks. It’s an awful feeling, as if the world is turning too fast for you. I have distinct, and painful, memories of my breath quickening, my chest closing. I felt, more than anything else, completely powerless. That was by no means true, and that is why I have chosen to write this article—so that you know that you know that you do have options.

First, anyone with General Anxiety Disorder should know that they do not have to tackle it alone. People are there to support them. If you feel uncomfortable talking to your parents about going to therapy, seeing a counselor is a great way of dealing with anxiety. You also probably have a counselor right on the campus of your school. School counselors are usually very understanding people, and there is no reason to be ashamed to see them.

Meditation can also be very healing with anxiety. The calming exercises involved in it are very effective in dealing with stress. Youth and support groups can be an important aid as well—having a network of people who understand what you go through and are there for you can put your mind at ease. If your anxiety is extremely pervasive and other methods have not helped you, there are herbal and western medications for GAD, which is something you can discuss with your doctor.

If anxiety is your daily reality, get help. There is a difference between stress and anxiety... For your own sake, don’t confuse them.