The number one phobia in U.K. is SPIDERS and number two is PRESENTING AND PUBLIC SPEAKING. In America it’s the other way round. Here is some information which you may find helpful. I practice in Matlock, Derbyshire, If you have a FEAR or PHOBIA contact me and let’s sort it.
Phobias and Hypnotherapy
A recent case study on curing a phobia of spiders with a client through hypnotherapy illustrates the effectiveness of hypnosis.
So let’s look at phobias in more detail.
A phobia is an overwhelming and debilitating fear of an object, place, situation, feeling or animal.
Phobias are more pronounced than fears. They develop when a person has an exaggerated or unrealistic sense of danger about a situation or object.
If a phobia becomes very severe, a person may organise their life around avoiding the thing that’s causing them anxiety. As well as restricting their day-to-day life, it can also cause a lot of distress.
A phobia is a type of anxiety disorder. You may not experience any symptoms until you come into contact with the source of your phobia.
However, in some cases, even thinking about the source of a phobia can make a person feel anxious or panicky. This is known as anticipatory anxiety.
Symptoms may include:• unsteadiness, dizziness and lightheadedness • nausea • sweating • increased heart rate or palpitations• shortness of breath • trembling or shaking • an upset stomach
If you don’t come into contact with the source of your phobia very often, it may not affect your everyday life. However, if you have a complex phobia such as agoraphobia (see below), leading a normal life may be very difficult.
Types of phobia
There are a wide variety of objects or situations that someone could develop a phobia about. However, phobias can be divided into two main categories:• specific or simple phobias • complex phobias
The two categories are discussed below.
Specific or simple phobias
Specific or simple phobias centre around a particular object, animal, situation or activity. They often develop during childhood or adolescence and may become less severe as you get older.
Common examples of simple phobias include:
Animal phobias – such as dogs, spiders, snakes or rodents
Environmental phobias – such as heights, deep water and germs
Eituational phobias – such as visiting the dentist or flying
Eodily phobias – such as blood, vomit or having injections
Sexual phobias – such as performance anxiety or the fear of getting a sexually transmitted infection
Agoraphobia often involves a combination of several interlinked phobias. For example, someone with a fear of going outside or leaving their home may also have a fear of being left alone (monophobia) or of places where they feel trapped (claustrophobia).
The symptoms experienced by people with agoraphobia can vary in severity. For example, some people can feel very apprehensive and anxious if they have to leave their home to go the shops. Others may feel relatively comfortable travelling short distances from their home.
If you have a social phobia, the thought of being seen in public or at social events can make you feel frightened, anxious and vulnerable.
Intentionally avoiding meeting people in social situations is a sign of social phobia. In extreme cases of social phobia, as with agoraphobia, some people are too afraid to leave their home.
What causes phobias?
Phobias don’t have a single cause, but there are a number of associated factors. For example:• a phobia may be associated with a particular incident or trauma • a phobia may be a learned response that a person develops early in life from a parent or sibling (brother or sister) • genetics may play a role – there’s evidence to suggest that some people are born with a tendency to be more anxious than others
Symptoms of phobias
People with phobias often purposely avoid coming into contact with the thing that causes them fear and anxiety. For example, someone with a fear of spiders (arachnophobia) may not want to touch a spider or even look at a picture of one.
In some cases, a person can develop a phobia where they become fearful of experiencing anxiety itself because it feels so uncomfortable.
You don’t have to be in the situation you’re fearful of to experience the symptoms of panic. The brain is able to create a reaction to fearsome situations even when you aren’t actually in the situation.
People with phobias often have panic attacks. Panic attacks can be very frightening and distressing. The symptoms often occur suddenly and without warning.
As well as overwhelming feelings of anxiety, a panic attack can cause physical symptoms, such as:• sweating • trembling • hot flushes or chills • shortness of breath or difficulty breathing • a choking sensation • rapid heartbeat (tachycardia) • pain or tightness in the chest • a sensation of butterflies in the stomach • nausea • headaches and dizziness • feeling faint • numbness or pins and needles• dry mouth • a need to go to the toilet • ringing in your ears • confusion or disorientation
In severe cases, you may also experience psychological symptoms, such as:• fear of losing control • fear of fainting• feelings of dread • fear of dying
Phobias aren’t usually formally diagnosed. Most people with a phobia are fully aware of the problem.
A person will sometimes choose to live with a phobia, taking great care to avoid the object or situation they’re afraid of. However, if you have a phobia, continually trying to avoid what you’re afraid of will make the situation worse.
The good news is a phobia is a learnt behaviour. When we are born we only have two fears, one is the fear of falling down the other a fear of loud noises. So just as a phobia is learnt it can be unlearnt and hypnosis using hypnotherapy is especially effective.