27 Celebrities Revealed Their Experiences With Anxiety and Panic Attacks

We admire celebrities for all sorts of inspirations like fashion, beauty, fitness, and success. But they can be even more motivating for those who suffer from panic attacks because there are so many celebrities who suffer from anxiety disorder.
If you've ever felt crippling anxiety, you know it's difficult to put it into words. Living with an anxiety disorder can mean a lot of things because symptoms such as difficulty sleeping, avoidance, fatigue, and even pain vary from person to person. Anxiety disorders include panic attacks, phobias, OCD, social anxiety, and PTSD, and 40 million American adults battle the internal battle every day.
Even though it's common, many people still feel embarrassed about discussing their anxiety. That's why it's crucial when celebrities open up about their mental health struggles.It just goes to show that whether you're famous or not, anxiety disorders affect everyone. Just think about it: if our beloved stars can succeed while experiencing panic attacks, so can you.
Here is a list of some famous people who suffer from anxiety disorders and shared their stories with the public.

#1 Adele


Yes, even Adele experiences anxiety before delivering a show-stopping performance— so much so that she considered canceling her tours entirely. "I have anxiety attacks, constant panicking on stage, my heart feels like it’s going to explode because I never feel like I’m going to deliver, ever," the 31-year-old singer explained. At one point, she burst into tears and found solace in asking herself, "'What would [Beyoncé’s alter ego] Sasha Fierce do?" Since then, she's used the strategy to boost her stage confidence and complete her "greatest accomplishment"—her world tour.

#2 Amanda Seyfried


Amanda Seyfried revealed in a 2016 interview with Allure that she is on Lexapro for OCD and that she will "never get off it" because she has been taking the anxiety medication since she was 19. "You don’t see the mental illness: It’s not a mass; it’s not a cyst. But it’s there. Why do you need to prove it? If you can treat it, you treat it," But it exists. Why do you need to demonstrate it? "You treat it if you can," she explained. "I had pretty bad health anxiety that came from the OCD and thought I had a tumor in my brain. I had an MRI, and the neurologist referred me to a psychiatrist. As I get old the compulsive thoughts and fears have diminished a lot. Knowing that a lot of my fears are not reality-based really helps."

#3 Ariana Grande


In May 2017, a suicide bomber targeted Ariana Grande's performance at the Manchester Arena in England, and the 25-year-old singer admits things have never been the same for her since. “When I got home from tour, I had really wild dizzy spells, this feeling like I couldn’t breathe,” she told Elle. “I would be in a good mood, fine and happy, and they would hit me out of nowhere. I’ve always had anxiety, but it had never been physical before. There were a couple of months straight where I felt so upside down.”  Although  Grande has only recently revealed her anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder diagnosis, she claims she has been in therapy for ten years.

#4 Busy Philipps


Busy Philipps claims she has suffered from anxiety since she was a child. "I used to lie awake in bed at night, and I would have spinning thoughts," she explained in a Facebook post in collaboration with the Child Mind Institute. "It would be really hard for me to get to sleep, and I would be so scared that I wouldn’t even go to my parent's room. And I didn’t want to tell them what was happening because I thought there was something wrong with me." And I didn't want to tell them what was going on because I thought something was wrong with me. "Once she realized that it was normal, she was able to get therapy and medication, which made her realize it is “kind of incredible to know that you’re not alone. "

#5 Carson Daly


Carson Daly claims he had his first panic attack right before going on the air. "I was having trouble breathing. "I had a hard time breathing. I was terrified for no apparent reason," he told But his anxious feelings were not limited to his high-pressure job. "I’ve had heightened anxiety and mild panic attacks at the playground with my own children and wife there. The feeling was so gripping and so terrifying that literally I had to leave and excuse myself. The feeling was so gripping and so terrifying that literally, I had to leave and excuse myself,” Daly explained. Daly says he has come to terms with his diagnosis after going through therapy and believes it has made him a more sensitive person.

#6 Chris Evans


Chris Evans at first turned down his major role in Captain America, fearful of how it would change his life. In a 2017 interview, he admitted, "I do struggle." "I get anxiety about certain things and press, things like that." However, accepting the role helped him overcome his fears, as he realized that "maybe the thing you’re most scared of is actually the thing you should do." What is his coping mechanism? He tells his brain to be quiet. "[The phrase] ‘Sssh’ has been a big thing for me. Everyone’s brain is noisy, and the root of suffering is following that brain noise and listening to that brain noise, and identifying with it as if it’s who you are."

#7 Colton Haynes


In an Instagram post in 2017, the Teen Wolf actor discussed his mental health. "I've mentioned it before, but I can't emphasize how important it is to seek help when you're feeling down or in your darkest moments," Haynes captioned the post. "I've struggled with anxiety and depression since the fifth grade, and it's not something that should be ignored or ignored." He went on to encourage fans to reach out to people in need of assistance and encouragement.

#8 Emma Stone


Emma Stone revealed in an Elle interview that she began dealing with anxiety at seven. "That’s when I started having panic attacks, which I’ve talked about pretty extensively. I think your wiring is just kind of what you are. My mom always says that I was born with my nerves outside of my body, " Stone explained. While she admits that talking about it was frightening for her, she says it has been "very healing," along with therapy and medication. Stone emphasized that her anxiety “is something that is part of me but it’s not who I am.”

#9 Gabrielle Union


Gabrielle Union was diagnosed with PTSD at 19 after surviving a violent sexual assault. The emotional impact of fan support on her book tour was meaningful. "I didn’t realize how big the need was for so many people to just get it out, to have someone look them in the eye and say, ‘I believe you.’ I cried a lot. I Skyped a lot with my life coach, because the horrors that I was taking in triggered my PTSD, " she told Redbook in 2018. "But I feel a responsibility to offer that sense of safety and support. And luckily I have the means to help myself at the end of the night."

#10 Gina Rodriguez


Gina Rodriguez, 34, posted a makeup-free video of herself in 2017 on Instagram, as part of a photography project by a friend. "I suffer from anxiety. And watching this clip I could see how anxious I was but I empathize with myself. I wanted to protect her and tell her it’s OK to be anxious, there is nothing different or strange about having anxiety and I will prevail. I like watching this video. It makes me uncomfortable but there is a freedom I feel maybe even an acceptance."

#11 Hugh Grant


Hugh Grant is his own harshest critic when it comes to acting, which has resulted in "out-of-the-blue panic attacks," he revealed in an interview with Entertainment Weekly. "It’ll be in a very easy, simple scene when everything is going swimmingly, and then suddenly, bang, I’m shvitzing and can’t remember my lines. At one stage I was asking directors not to say ‘action’ because I found that the word sent me into paroxysms of terror." At one point, I asked directors not to use the word "action" because it caused me to have panic attacks. He took a break from acting for nearly five years due to his struggles, but he returned to a lead role in Florence Foster Jenkins in 2016 thanks to a "brilliant script" and Meryl Streep's support.

#12 Jennifer Lopez


J.Lo appears to have it all—but the 49-year-old singer admits that her life has been far from perfect, particularly in terms of her previous relationships. She had a panic attack during a photo shoot when she realized her seven-year marriage to Marc Anthony would end in divorce, prompting her to end the relationship. "As I sat there getting made up, my heart was beating out of my chest and I felt like I couldn’t breathe... I became consumed with anxiety," Lopez revealed in her memoir True Love. She says she felt like she was "going crazy" at the time, but she has since healed and found a healthy relationship with her fiancé Alex Rodriguez.

#13 Kendall Jenner


Kendall Jenner has had panic attacks in the middle of the night as a result of her anxiety, which has been triggered by social media negativity, constant travel for work, and traumatic events that have affected her family, such as her sister Kim Kardashian's armed robbery. Flying has served as a significant trigger. "I once had a really bad [anxiety] attack on a plane and just had to ride it out," Jenner wrote on her website, according to SELF. "I felt my heart beating a million miles an hour, and I even went a little numb." According to the 23-year-old model, she copes by using various breathing techniques.

#14 Kristen Bell


Kristen Bell became "plagued with a negative attitude and a sense that I was permanently in the shade," in college, according to an essay she wrote for TIME. The 38-year-old actress expressed gratitude to her mother, who always told her it was okay to seek help without feeling ashamed. That's why Bell has been candid with her fans about her struggles with anxiety and depression. In fact, she openly shared her top coping mechanisms on Instagram, including meditating, cooking, gardening, talking to friends and a therapist, and exercising.

#15 Lady Gaga


Lady Gaga has been a vocal advocate for ending the stigma surrounding mental health. The 33-year-old singer/ actress has been open about her struggles with depression, anxiety, and PTSD to inspire hope in others. "I’ve suffered through depression and anxiety my entire life, I still suffer with it every single day," she told Billboard in 2015. "I just want these kids to know that the depth they feel as human beings are normal." We were born that way."

#16 Lena Dunham


Lena Dunham prioritizes physical and mental health by exercising. "I know it's mad annoying when people tell you to exercise, and it took me about 16 medicated years to listen," the Girls actress wrote on Instagram. "I'm relieved I did. It's all about the brain, not the ass."
She also emphasizes that anxiety should be treated similarly to any other medical condition. "I'd tell my younger self that there's no shame in asking a teacher for help, telling a friend that you're uncomfortable, and that it's just as bad as falling and scraping your knee," Dunham said in a Facebook video.

#17 Leonardo Dicaprio


Leonardo Dicaprio says his anxiety is caused by "really stupid stuff, things that shouldn’t make you anxious whatsoever," he told Rolling Stone in 2010. "It’s crazy how your mind will become this database to make you worry about things that are so arbitrary. I have a well-organized life, and I’ve put a lot of thought into the things that I do, and then, you know, my stomach will be...I’ll just be sitting there, totally anxious about something ridiculous. You have to stop yourself during the day and say, ‘It’s just not worth it."

#18 Lili Reinhart


Lili Reinhart was an aspiring actress before landing the role of Betty Cooper in Riverdale. The lack of income, the stress of booking work, and auditioning after the audition was "the most miserable time" of her life, she told W magazine in 2017. "My anxiety was so bad that I had to keep quitting jobs because I physically could not work," Reinhart explained. When she realized her "world was crashing" and she needed to take care of her mental health, she began seeing a therapist who assisted her in working through her difficulties.

#19 Michael Phelps


According to CNN, Olympic champion Michael Phelps revealed in 2018 that he has struggled with anxiety, depression, and even suicidal thoughts and that he is "extremely thankful" that he did not commit suicide. He is now encouraging others to seek help. “Throughout my career, I struggled with depression and anxiety at various times, and I found it so difficult to get the help I needed,” he said in a statement in partnership with Talkspace, an online therapy app. “As I started opening up and talking about my issues, I felt strength, not vulnerability.”

#20 Missy Elliot


Missy Elliot, an award-winning rapper, exudes confidence on stage, but she has battled anxiety since she was a child. "I was always feisty, always that kid that would be on the porch with a hairbrush singing or rapping," she said in a 2017 Billboard interview. "I got shyer as I got older and realized people could be laughing at me, or judging me." She had a full-fledged panic attack the night before her 2015 Super Bowl halftime performance. "Like, IVs in my arm, everything," she recalled.

#21 Prince Harry


The Royal family has made great efforts to de-stigmatize mental health struggles by talking frankly about their own struggles. In one interview, Prince Harry discussed the panic attacks that plagued him following his mother's death. “In my case, every single time I was in any room with loads of people, which is quite often, I was just pouring with sweat, my heart beating—boom, boom, boom, boom—literally, just like a washing machine,” he explained. He didn't realize he needed professional help until he was 28 and fighting in Afghanistan.

#22 Ryan Reynolds


“I have anxiety, I’ve always had anxiety,” Ryan Reynolds admitted to the New York Times in May 2018. “Both in the lighthearted ‘I’m anxious about this kind of thing, and I’ve been to the depths of the darker end of the spectrum, which is not fun.”  Growing up with a tough father influenced the Deadpool actor as a child, and the effects may have carried over into adulthood. “He wasn’t easy on anyone. And he wasn’t easy on himself. I think the anxiety might have started there, trying to find ways to control others by trying to control myself.”

#23 Sarah Silverman


Sarah Silverman told Glamour that she first experienced depression when she was 13 years old, and the panic attacks soon followed. "I went from being the class clown to not being able to see life in that casual way anymore." "I couldn't deal with being with my friends, so I skipped school for months and began having panic attacks," Silverman explained. "People use 'panic attack' very casually out here in Los Angeles, but I don’t think most of them really know what it is. Every breath is labored. You are dying. You are going to die. It’s terrifying." The 48-year-old comedian claims that seeing a therapist and taking medication saved her life.

#24 Selena Gomez


Selena Gomez, one of Instagram's most-followed people, has been open about how the social media spotlight has affected her mental health. However, the pressures did not stop there: "Tours are a really lonely place for me," she admitted to Vogue in 2017. "My self-esteem was shot. I was depressed, and anxious. I started to have panic attacks right before getting onstage, or right after leaving the stage. " Following a panic attack following a kidney transplant due to her lupus diagnosis, the 26-year-old singer began dialectical behavior therapy, which "completely changed her life."

#25 Selma Blair


In October 2018, Selma Blair was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, a chronic inflammatory disease of the brain and spinal cord. Blair's symptoms have included difficulty walking, speech problems, and pain, but she also claims that the disease has affected her mental health. “There is a truth with neurodegenerative brain disease. It is uncomfortable,” she wrote in an Instagram caption. "At times, it's a stadium of uncontrollable anxiety." Going out and being sociable comes at a high cost.

#26 Stephen Colbert


Stephen Colbert is known for making people laugh, but that doesn't mean he hasn't struggled with mental health issues, even at such a young age. "After I got married, I had a nervous breakdown—panic attacks." "I had a bit of a nervous breakdown after I got married—kind of panic attacks. My wife would go off to work and she’d come home—because I worked at night— and I’d be walking around the couch," Colbert revealed in a 2018 Rolling Stone interview. According to the 55-year-old talk show host, medication has been a huge help.

#27 Zayn Malik


When Zayn Malik began canceling solo shows, his team offered to issue a statement claiming that he was ill, but he refused because he didn't want to keep hiding the truth. "When I was in One Direction, my anxiety issues were huge but, within the safety net of the band, they were at least manageable. As a solo performer, I felt much more exposed, and the psychological stress of performing had just gotten to be too much for me to handle—at that moment, at least." The outpouring of support from fans astounded him, making him feel as if "some good had come from the situation."
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