Overcoming Panic (Just a Thought) course

This app is useful for people who experience frequent panic attacks if they're already engaged with a health professional who can work alongside them. They will need to be self-motivated and have good English language ability.

Overcoming Panic course By Just A Thought
  • Information sheets (PDF) that can be downloaded and printed.
  • Progress that can be monitored.
  • Save as you go option which allows the user flexibility to choose how long then engage in the programme at any one time.

Check the course:

Country of origin  New Zealand
Clinical review 

Read a clinical review of this app.

Security and privacy Does the app:
  • collect medical information? Yes – if chosen can complete mental health screens which are saved and can be sent through to health support person.
  • require a login? Yes
  • can be password protected? Yes
  • have a privacy policy? Yes
  • require internet access? Yes
Read more safety tips around health apps.
Cost Free
Advertisements This app contains no ads.

What does the app do?

In this online course users learn all about panic and effective ways to break the ‘cycle of panic’. The content is based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) skills.

The first course 'Overcoming Panic' consists of 3 parts:
1) What is panic? – in this part users learn about panic and why it happens and managing uncomfortable symptoms with some relaxation breathing skills.
2) Tackling unhelpful thoughts - in this part users focus on anxious thoughts, which often drive panic and how to manage these
3) Avoidance and safety behaviours - in this part users learn how to approach things in life that they may have been avoiding because of panic.

The second course 'Overcoming Panic – next steps' is about learning how to manage panic over the long-term. It also has 3 parts:
1) Sitting with sensations – in this part users learn how to use 'panic exercises' to tackle the physical sensations of panic.
2) Troubleshooting panic – in this part users learn about common roadblocks people face when working on panic, and how to deal with them when they come up.
3) Overcoming Setbacks – in this part users learn how to combine the previous learned skills to manage future challenges and setbacks.

The course recommends taking a week to complete each part (3 weeks in total for each course), however users are able to go at their own pace and save their progress as they go.

Each part of the course is broken down into 3 segments:
a) Story – reading through the story of Penny, a New Zealand based fictional character who experiences panic attacks and following her treatment journey.
b) Lesson – working through the lesson that relates to the chosen part’s topic.
c) Action Plan – reviewing key points and planning activities to practice between lessons.

Users can work through the course with the support of a health practitioner who can monitor their progress.

The course provides a source of accurate information about anxiety and panic attacks and a clear treatment process to follow to deal with panic when it arises.

The course teaches useful techniques to practice in the Tools and Tips section and also provides the opportunity to connect with other people who are experiencing similar challenges.

For the complete app description, go to the app website(external link) or, for a more detailed review, see Reviews.


✔ Good source of accurate information about anxiety and panic symptoms. It explains the important role anxiety plays in our life (eg, what is normal anxiety) and helps to distinguish when it becomes problematic (eg, out of control).

✔ Has clear definitions and uses easy to understand language.

✔ New Zealand-based case example (with effective visual graphics) for clients to identify with and provide a more personalised experience.

✔ Offers research-based interventions that have high efficacy when practiced consistently.

✔ Encourages the setting of goals and outlines clear actionable exercises to elicit behavioural change

✔ Interactive exercises which encourage clients to enter personal information that's then saved and summarised at the end of each part.

✔ Able to complete with the support of a health practitioner and have them directly monitor your progress.

✔ Reference to online support groups.

✔ Free.

✘ Limited variety with a lot of reading content (clicking through the many slides of the story can feel quite tedious). This may be hard for people who struggle with self-motivation, or have difficulty concentrating for longer periods of time.

✘ The content may feel overwhelming without a health professional support person to oversee the user's progress and process questions and concerns.

Review details

Date of review: September 2023
Platform reviewed: No app, website suitable both android/apple 

Related topics on Healthify

Mental health and wellbeing apps
Anxiety topics
CBT apps
NZ Health App Library
Consumer guide: how to choose a health app
Clinicians guide: how to choose a health app

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Reviewed by: David Bloore, Clinical Psychologist, David Bloore Psychology Ltd (private practice)

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