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Anxiety is an extremely common but nonetheless extremely disruptive experience. Having anxiety can mean sleepless nights, missed opportunities, feeling sick, and panic attacks that can keep you from feeling like your full self.

Therapy with a professional is often a huge help, but knowing you’re armed with the tools to confront, dissolve, or embrace your anxious thoughts and feelings can be the bit of empowerment you need in between sessions.

We chose the best anxiety apps based on customer ratings, as many of the apps mentioned have at least a 4.5 rating. We also considered price, features, and what operating system the app is available on when creating this list.

Pricing guide

  • $ = under $9 per month
  • $$ = $9–$13 per month
  • $$$ = over $13 per month

To get started on managing your anxiety, check out our top apps for 2021:

Best anxiety app for meditation

Calm

iPhone rating: 4.8 stars

Android rating: 4.2 stars

Price: $$$

Sleep is important for managing stress, but it’s also one of the first things to become an issue when you’re feeling anxious. Sleep, meditation, and relaxation are in your hands with Calm, a popular mindfulness app. These guided meditations are good for complete novices and seasoned practitioners, and you have your pick when it comes to how long you can dedicate to the app each day.

Calm offers a mood check-in feature that tracks your mood throughout the day and puts together a personalized report of your moods. In the free version, the app offers a limited amount of guided exercises and meditative audio to help relieve stress.

Calm also features nature sounds and sleep stories to help lull you into relaxed sleep, but a subscription is required to access these features. Luckily, you’re able to use their 7-day free trial to see if the subscription is worth it for you.

Best anxiety app for adult coloring

Colorfy

iPhone rating: 4.7 stars

Android rating: 4.0 stars

Price: $$$

Colorfy is an adult coloring book brought into the digital realm. With a selection of images and mandalas to choose from, or the option to upload your own sketches to color, you can spend hours in a flow state or focused meditation through this app.

A recent study showed that adult coloring helped lower anxiety levels in participants, so pouring your attention into the beautiful designs may help distract from your anxious thoughts and help provide some calm.

While Colorfy offers a large majority of images to color for free, you have to purchase a subscription in order to get access to the full library of images. However, Colorfy offers a 7-day free trial, so you can try it out before you buy the subscription.

Best guided anxiety app

Dare

iPhone rating: 4.8 stars

Android rating: 4.9 stars

Price: $$

Dare to face your fears, whether you’re dealing with anxiety, panic, worry, or insomnia. The Dare app can walk you through audio recordings to help you sit comfortably with your anxiety rather than avoid it, a tactic that may make anxiety worse.

On-screen guides give you something to focus on while you breathe deeply and listen to calming nature sounds. With a subscription, you’re even able to access guided meditation and exercises for those who have trouble sleeping. Dare also has a free 7-day trial period, so you can test these features before you purchase.

Best anxiety app for sleep

Nature Sounds Relax and Sleep

Android rating: 4.5 stars

Price: Free

Racing thoughts and ruminations are hallmarks of anxiety, but you can slow down, breathe deeply, and clear your thoughts with the gentle sounds and sights of nature in this app.

From thunder and rain to crackling fires and bird sounds and more, there’s something for everyone. Set the app timer to listen while you gently drift off to sleep, or set one of the tracks as your morning alarm so you can start your day with a soothing sound.

A recent study suggests that listening to nature sounds can be helpful to reduce stress, so this app may be an easy way to lower your anxiety.

Most features on this app are free. But with one-time purchases, you can gain access to more sounds.

Best meditation app for people of color

Shine

iPhone rating: 4.7 stars

Android rating: 4.8 stars

Price: $$$

The way anxiety is experienced and expressed can be different based on someone’s cultural background. The Shine app was designed by women of color to address the anxieties that are specific to the their communities. The app offers meditation practices, podcasts, a huge audio library, and community forums, so you can work on managing your anxiety alone or with the support of others who have a similar background.

Shine requires a subscription to use most of the features in the app, but it does give daily mood-boosting audio recordings and gratitude check-ins without a subscription. You’re also able to use a 7-day free trial before purchasing a subscription.

Best anxiety app for breathing techniques

Breathwrk

iPhone rating: 4.9 stars

Price: $

If you have anxiety, you’ve probably tried a breathing exercise or two to help calm yourself. The Breathwrk app takes the science of breathing exercises even further by curating a collection of breathing exercises based on your goal: falling asleep, feeling relaxed, feeling energized, or alleviating stress. The app walks you through how to do each exercise and can send you daily reminders to remember to… well, breathe.

Most breathing exercises are completely free, but with a small monthly fee, you’re able to gain access to even more exercises, and have unlimited access to track your breathing habits all month long. Breathwrk also has the most cost-friendly subscription on the list and offers a 7-day trial before you sign up for a subscription.

Best anxiety app game

AntiStress Anxiety Relief Game

iPhone rating: 4.5 stars

Android rating: 4.2 stars

Price: Free

You know those fidget cubes with all the little tools and gadgets on them to keep you distracted? Imagine a whole app full of these little fun distractions: That’s the AntiStress app.

With mindless games like bubblewrap popping, fidget spinners, pen clicking, soap carving, and many more, this app is a great tool to have if you need a quick fix to help take your mind off what’s making you anxious. The best part? This app is completely free.

Best anxiety app for hypnosis

Anxiety Relief Hypnosis

Android rating: 4.5 stars

Price: Free

Whether you believe in hypnosis or not, this app is worth a shot because of its tools and techniques meant to help soothe your anxiety. This is done by using audio experiences. The app includes readings and pre-recorded sounds designed to help relieve stress, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and related symptoms like anger and OCD that may be worsened by anxiety.

Anxiety Relief Hypnosis is completely free to try with default settings. A one-time fee is required if you want to change the settings.

Best anxiety app for journaling

Moodnotes

iPhone rating: 4.7 stars

Price: $$

Moodnotes lets you document your entire experience with anxiety in all of its forms. Built on cognitive behavioral therapy techniques and positive psychology, this app lets you understand and manage the entire experience of anxiety.

Moodnotes has a wide range of techniques to help you manage your anxiety. You can take a picture of your face to visualize your mood, write down your thoughts at the moment you begin feeling anxious, or you can read educational materials that help you get out of the cycle of “thinking traps.”

Moodnotes requires a subscription to use most of the features, but it does allow for a 7-day free trial.

There are a number of anxiety apps on the market, and many of them aim to help ease anxiety in a number of different ways. With the number of options available, choose the app that works best for you.

It’s also important to keep in mind that some of these apps may not work for you at all. If you find that an app isn’t successful for you, consider trying a different one.

It’s also important to note that none of the apps listed here are meant to replace sessions with a trained mental health professional.

If you find that you need more mental health support while using these apps, be sure to schedule an appointment with a trained professional.

If you want to nominate an app for this list, email us at nominations@healthline.com.