Niamh shares her journey through severe anxiety

At the age of 18, I was diagnosed with severe anxiety. I took on too much. I pressured myself to get all A*s at college and worked myself to a literal breaking point to get into the best university I could. I ended up breaking under this stress and was in hospital for a week. The doctors, after doing multiple tests, came to the conclusion that it was “just” anxiety. This was devastating for me at the time as I felt completely deflated and had no understanding about what was happening. I was then put into contact with the amazing mental health teams where I live who worked with me to help me to put my life back together.

Three years on, life is better than I could have imagined. Talking about life and my struggles has saved my life. I stopped pretending everything was okay and started being real. My advice to anyone struggling is to please know that talking about how you feel is so important. This has helped and continues to help me on a daily basis. There are so many people to help you, be it friends and family or wonderful charities such as Mind or even NHS therapists. The teams at these charities and therapists are incredible with the advice they give and for pointing you in the right direction of different ways to help.