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Top Tips for Dealing with Anxiety at Walt Disney World

Walt Disney World is supposed to be magical; however, it might not feel so magical if you deal with anxiety. With large crowds, lots of stimulation in the form of noise and movement, and extreme heat, the experience might feel anything but magical.

We want to help everyone have a magical time at Walt Disney World, so we thought we’d share some tips for managing your anxiety while on vacation. We hope that these strategies can help you still have a wonderful time.

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Stick To Your Routine

Vacation can be crazy as you step away from your routine and enjoy some time away from reality. Although that is what Disney is all about, make sure you stick to your practices regarding your mental health.

If you take medicine, ensure you continue to do so at Walt Disney World. Set your alarm, so you don’t accidentally forget it while having a good time. Making sure you take your medicine at the same time as you usually do at home will help your body continue to know what to expect.

This also goes if you have regular therapy appointments. If you can keep your appointment by setting up a virtual meeting, ensure you do so. Having that professional to talk to helps you through any anxious feelings you might have during the trip.

Savannah view from Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge
Credit: Disney

Plan for Alone Time

Even though you love your time with your friends and family at Walt Disney World, it is also okay to allow for some alone time. Being able to step away for a short or long period can help you settle your anxiety.

Take time to do something just for yourself. That might be getting a snack, napping, seeing a show, or people-watching. Be okay with setting up the expectation that you must take time for yourself during the trip.

Amazon Headphones
Credit: Amazon

Bring Noise Canceling Headphones or Ear Plugs

One of the tricky things about Walt Disney World is how loud everything is everywhere you go. From screaming on the rides, to at the pools, to just the overall noise that comes with so many people, Disney is not quiet.

To remove some of the noise, bring your noise-canceling headphones or earplugs. These can help drown out some of the excess noise. With less noise, you can feel less anxious.


Visit a Show

There are fantastic shows to enjoy in each of the four Disney Parks. Visiting these shows throughout the day is a great way to escape the crowds and heat. With typically short waits, shows can be a fantastic way to have a seat and relax while still enjoying Disney magic.

Have a Snack

Something that can add to your anxiety is being hungry. Consider bringing in your own individual snacks to help prevent yourself from getting super hungry and needing help knowing where to get something in the Park. By having your own snacks, you can quickly sit and enjoy something to eat.


Sit and Relax

We mentioned visiting a show as a great way to relax, but we also like finding hidden areas throughout the Disney Parks for some quiet time. We have some top choices HERE for places in Walt Disney World that a great for a nice place to relax and have some quiet time.

Leave the Parks

If you feel super anxious, allow time away from the Parks. Head back to your Walt Disney World Resort hotel or visit one of the nearby Disney Resorts. By stepping away from the Parks, you can reset and get ready to head back to the Parks later.

Get Sleep

Something that causes all of us stress during a Walt Disney World vacation is a lack of sleep. We often get wrapped up in going to the Parks early and staying out late. Don’t get worn down; that can make you even more anxious. Allow yourself to sleep in so you can feel refreshed. You don’t need to rope drop every day of your trip.

By sleeping in and going to the Parks later, you also miss the large crowds that form before the Parks open. This could add anxiety to the morning if you don’t care to be in large groups of people rushing to start the day.

Sleeping in can allow you to stay up later at night as well. Evenings are often a lot calmer.

Visit First Aid

Each of the four Disney Parks Guests can find a first aid station. These are free to use and can provide much relief for Guests. If your anxiety is causing you to have headaches, feel nausea or dehydration, head to the first aid stations where great nurses can help you with your systems. These areas are also tranquil, making them a good resting spot.

Slinky Dog Dash
Photo Credit: Disney

Consider DAS

Disney offerest those that might need it a Disability Access Service or DAS. This pass allows Guests to avoid waiting in long lines that can often cause anxiety. You can get return times for rides and experiences, allowing you to manage your anxiety better.

You can preregister for this service, making it an excellent option for many.


Walt Disney World is a magical place; however, if you struggle with anxiety, Disney might not seem as remarkable to you. We hope that by sharing these ways of dealing with anxiety at Walt Disney World, you will feel more confident in managing your anxiety while enjoying a wonderful trip to Walt Disney World.



Jennifer Retzlaff

Jennifer became a lifelong Disney fan during her first trip to Walt Disney World in 6th grade. From that moment, Disney became a big part of her life. She quickly started to introduce her love of Disney to her family with a Disney honeymoon and then family trips when her youngest was 18 months old. She loves the magic that Disney brings to people through theme parks, cruises, and adventures. As a teacher, she tries to bring Disney magic into her classroom to help kids believe that “If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It.” She is also part of the Magic Vacation Planner team as a personal travel advisor. With this team, she can now help others plan magical vacations. She loves bringing her love to Disney to readers with How to Disney.

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