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Panic Attacks

Everyone knows what panic is, and it is common to feel panicky from time to time such as:

  • A sense that you are being followed on your way home from a party, late at night. 
  • You discover you have had your wallet stolen. 
  • You are sitting an exam. 

It would be normal in any of these situations to feel a sense of panic.  The feeling would be understandable and would pass fairly quickly.  A panic attack is a bit like ‘normal’ panic, but different in a number of ways: 

  • The feelings are a lot stronger.  
  • The feelings seem to come ‘out of the blue’ and are not usually related to the sort of frightening situation described above. 
  • The feelings often last longer than a few minutes.  As the feelings are unexpected, strong and often very physical, they can feel extremely frightening.  

Panic attacks affect people in many different ways, but there is usually a sudden frightening feeling that something really awful is about to happen, with strong physical symptoms. 

This can cause people to feel that something more serious, such as a heart attack is happening.

How we can help with Panic Attacks:

I want to keep a healthy mind

Self-help guides

The NHS have produced a range of self-help guides that can be viewed as a PDF or an audio version. To view the guides please visit the self-help guides bookshelf (opens in new window).

Relaxation techniques

Exploring relaxation can help you look after yourself when you're feeling stressed or worried. Why not try these relaxation routines and see how relaxation can fit into your daily life? Listen to the audio guides here. 

SilverCloud online therapy

SilverCloud courses are designed to help you improve and maintain your wellbeing by changing the way you think and feel about things.

There are several free courses to pick from including positive body image, panic, covid-19, depression, anxiety, stress and many more.

All you need is access to the internet and sound on a computer, tablet or mobile. The programme is flexible so you can use it anytime, anyplace, and anywhere. They feature videos, activities, quizzes, audio guides and your own online journal. Find out more on the SilverCloud website page.

Every Mind Matters

Expert advice and practical tips to help you look after your mental health and wellbeing. Visit the Every Mind Matters website. 

Here2Help (if you live in Worcestershire)

Here2Help is a service that offers support for people of all ages. It includes information, advice, tools, guidance and local support available in the local community. 

Talk Community (if you live in Herefordshire)

Talk Community is helping residents, businesses, community leaders and our council to make Herefordshire a better place to live and work. 


Podcasts can be a really good way of relaxing the mind, listen to features, interviews and a number of people involved in mental health, including people have experience mental health difficulties, campaigners and mental health experts. To find out more visit the podcast resources page.

I’m struggling and have been for a couple of weeks

NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire Talking Therapies

The NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire Talking Therapies team are trained and experienced in supporting a wide range of more common mental health issues. Mostly this involves ‘talking therapy’ approaches. Talking therapy could involve group discussion, or more traditional 1:1 sessions. We also provide online courses which the team can guide you through. To find out more about the service and self-refer visit the service webpage.


Free mental wellbeing support including online chat and forums - Visit Qwell.


Visit your GP practice team to discuss the best options for you, including access to specialist services.

Herefordshire and Worcestershire Wellbeing and Recovery College

Courses and workshops to give people the tools, skills and understanding that they need for their own wellbeing and recovery. Visit the Recovery College website here. 

Employment support (part of the Healthy Minds service)

Mental Health Matters are working in partnership with Herefordshire and Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust to provide employment-related support to individuals who are accessing NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire Talking Therapies.

I need urgent advice

Urgent NHS mental health helpline

Call the free local NHS urgent mental health helpline 0808 196 9127 if you need advice and support quickly. (24 hours a day 365 days a year).

Call 999

For free, if you are seriously injured, have taken an overdose or if there is an immediate risk to life.


Samaritans freephone: 116-123    

Shout: Text “SHOUT” to 85258

Other local and national support

Other local support

The little book of mental health

The little book of mental health is a practical guide for everyday emotional wellbeing produced by Worcestershire County Council.

Herefordshire Mind

We are Herefordshire’s local mental health charity. Our aim is that no one in Herefordshire should have to face a mental health problem alone. Please feel free to get in touch with us anytime.

Springfield Mind

Springfield Mind is the leading mental health charity for South Warwickshire and Worcestershire.

The CLD Trust (if you live in Herefordshire)

Our counselling staff are all professionally trained and qualified and have significant experience and specialisms.  We are able to offer a variety of counselling therapy including brief sessional therapy and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), solution focused therapy, specialist substance misuse and systemic family practice. Find out more on their charity website:

The Cart Shed (if you live in Herefordshire)

Providing activities such as woodwork, coppicing, gardening and cooking can all have an emotionally healing effect. A non-clinical setting helping individuals address and overcome issues they may be finding difficult to self-manage. To find out more visit the Cart Shed website:

Simply Limitless (if you live in Worcestershire)

The charity provides support to people of all ages in the community with their mental, social and physical health.

Onside Advocacy

Onside provide a range of support and services to ensure fairness and equality for adults who may be vulnerable, disadvantaged or discriminated against. This includes mental and physical ill health, sensory impairment, learning disability, drug and alcohol misuse, older people, and carers.  

Community First

Community First is at the forefront of sustainable, robust community development in Herefordshire and Worcestershire. We specialise in providing high quality advice and support to community groups and organisations, to help them grow and meet the needs of the communities they serve.


We are a vibrant, independent organisation committed to improving the lives of people in Herefordshire & Worcestershire through the power of physical activity and sport.

West Mercia Women’s aid

WMWA works for a world that is free from domestic abuse and violence against women and girls, where everyone can live without the fear and reality of all forms of violence, abuse and discrimination.

Relate counselling

Relationship Counselling and Sex Therapy in Worcestershire and Herefordshire.

Worcestershire Association of carers

The home of support for all unpaid carers in and around Worcestershire.

Drug and Alcohol Support




National support

Silver Line

The Silver Line is the only free confidential helpline providing information, friendship and support to older people, open 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

The hub of hope

The Hub of Hope is the UK’s leading mental health support database. It is provided by national mental health charity, Chasing the Stigma, and brings local, national, peer, community, charity, private and NHS mental health support and services together in one place for the first time.


As a new dad you will feel excited, but you may also feel left out, unsure or overwhelmed. The DadPad can help by giving you the knowledge and practical skills that you need.  The resource will support you and your partner to give your baby the best possible start in life.

Reading Well

Reading Well is a national scheme supporting people to understand and manage their health and wellbeing using helpful reading. The books on our reading lists can be recommended by a health professional and taken free of charge from a local library, or users can self-refer and borrow the titles as they would any other library book.