What are phobias?
Phobias are intense and irrational fears of objects, places, beings, experiences, and things that can lead to intense anxiety. At times the individual has a specific event or experience that triggers the onset of the phobia, and for others it starts without a particular reason. Individuals will often avoid feared situations in an effort to prevent a panic attack, which over time can reduce their quality/satisfaction with life. The first part of phobia treatment is to identify and assess your fears.
Our therapists specialize in phobias, and have treated many different forms including:
- Fear of heights (including bridges)
- Fear of injections, needles and other medical procedures
- Fear of enclosed spaces (such as elevators)
- Fear of flying
- Fear of driving
- Fear of vomiting
- Fear of animals or insects (dogs, spiders, caterpillars)Fear of water
- Fear of public speaking (related to social phobia/social anxiety- see below!)
What is agoraphobia?
Agoraphobia is the fear of being in inescapable embarrassing/stressful situations that could lead to a panic attack. Individuals dealing with agoraphobia will often avoid
- leaving home
- driving far
- going out in public
- being alone
- or other situations where a panic attack may occur
Often, individuals will develop different strategies to avoid specific situations especially where they may worry they cannot leave, escape, or fear they would not be able to get help. The fears often start to spread across situations and can make their life become more and more limited with time. Agoraphobia treatment is such rewarding work for us as therapists. Working with one of our psychologists on anxiety treatment will help you get back out in the world.
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