5 Strategies for Calming Your Teen’s Anxiety Quickly

Photo of Caucasian sitting on the floor in a brown dress with her hands on her face representing her need for online counseling for teens in Illinois for her anxiety attack.

When you live with anxiety, that familiar slow-rising panic within you can appear at any moment. Life is normal one minute and the next, you feel your chest tighten and your heart begin to race. You begin to hyper-focus on future events and find yourself getting lost in “what-if’s”.

Then to make matters worse, you begin to berate yourself for allowing the panic to get the best of you. Finally, you convince yourself that all of those “what-if’s” are indisputable facts.

5 Strategies for Calming Your Teen’s Anxiety Quickly

Living with anxiety can be painful and unpredictable. For teens especially, it can feel confusing and disorienting. As a parent, you may feel helpless and at a loss for what to do.

Thankfully, there are many powerful tools and techniques you can share with your teen on how to manage their anxiety more effectively.

Breathe Deeply

The minute you feel an anxiety attack coming on, the first thing to do is stop and gain control of your breath. Deep, slow breathing sends a signal to your brain that everything is safe in your environment. Controlled breathing is one of the most powerful ways to activate your body’s relaxation response. It will take your mind and body off your “fight or flight” mode and bring it instantly into a calm and relaxed state.

Accept That You Are Anxious

It’s important to remember that anxiety is “just a feeling”. And like all feelings, it can go as quickly as it came. You are having an emotional reaction to a string of thoughts.  Accept your anxiety because trying to pretend it’s not happening will only make matters worse.

Let’s be clear – by accepting your anxiety, you are not resigning yourself to a life of eternal misery. You are not throwing in the towel either. You are simply living a more mindful existence, staying in the moment, and accepting whatever is in the moment with you.

Your Emotions Can Not Kill You

One of the most frightening things about an anxiety attack is the feeling that you are having a heart attack. But you aren’t. Your brain can and will play tricks on you trying to get you to believe that you are in physical danger. But the truth is, you are not in physical danger. You are having an episode based on emotions and it will pass. Remind yourself of that as many times as you need to.

Question Your Thoughts

When your anxiety attack begins, your mind begins to throw out all sorts of outlandish ideas at you, hoping some of them stick. These thoughts are intended to keep the panic attack going.

Before you take any of these thoughts as reality and truth, question them. For instance, if your mind throws out random thoughts like, “I’m a bad friend. I’m definitely going to screw this up. I probably left the garage door open. And I’ll no doubt get stuck in bad traffic on the way home and maybe even get a flat tire which means I’ll be stranded, and on and on and on…”

Question these ideas. Are you TRULY a bad friend? Most likely not. Are you really going to screw up? Probably not. Traffic? Well, maybe but a flat tire? Chances are slim.

Always question your thoughts. You will usually find the majority aren’t very realistic or probable.


Picture someplace serene that makes you feel peaceful and calm. Maybe this is your grandfather’s old house or a lake you’ve visited before. Maybe it’s that fantastic beachfront condo from your last vacation. Just picture it in your mind’s eye and really put yourself there. See it, smell it, feel it. Experience how calming it feels to be in this space that is perfectly comforting and safe.

Use these techniques the next time you experience an anxiety attack. They should help you feel much calmer sooner.

Begin Online Counseling for Teens with Anxiety in Illinois

Is your teen experiencing symptoms of anxiety? Counseling can help your teen reduce their anxiety as well as increase their confidence and resilience. As an experienced and caring therapist, I love providing online anxiety treatment to teens. To start your teen’s counseling journey, follow these simple steps:

  1. Click on the Schedule an Appointment button
  2. Select a day and time in my online calendar
  3. Watch your teen gain confidence and become happier

Other Counseling Services at Briefly Counseling

Anxiety counseling for teens isn’t the only service I offer in my Chicago and Illinois online counseling practice. Other mental health services provided by Briefly Counseling includes child therapy and Christian counseling.

Helena Madsen, MA, LCPC is the founder of Briefly Counseling. I specialize in providing online short-term anxiety treatment for kids and teens ages 7 – 19 in Chicago and Illinois.

I provide all services via online therapy in Illinois. So whether you’re in Naperville, Chicago, Champaign, Rockford, Libertyville, or Crystal Lake, I can help you. Schedule your appointment or consultation today. I look forward to working with your child to quickly and effectively help them in activating their strengths, resources, and resilience, in order to live with confidence and hope.

Visit my website at www.BrieflyCounseling.com for more information or call 224-236-2296 to connect with me personally.