Panic and Phobia Treatment

What is panic disorder?

Individuals with panic disorder experience intense anxiety episodes that are often accompanied by really uncomfortable physiological sensations. The individual may believe that they are having a heart attack, are dying, will pass out, are going to lose control of bladder or bowels, or feeling like they will “go crazy.” In fact, people often discover they have panic disorder after going to the doctor repeatedly or to the emergency department. Over time, people start engaging in less activities and avoiding feared situations out of concern that they are going to have another panic attack. The first step one of our experts in panic treatment will help you with is assess what panic is like for you and what it is that you fear will happen.

What are symptoms of a panic attack?

  • Rapid heart rate
  • Difficulty catching one’s breath
  • Chest pain
  • Trembling
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Sweating
  • Nausea
  • Feeling out of control
  • Dread that something terrible is going to happen
  • The desire to get away/leave the situation

Therapy for panic helps you learn that what you are experiencing is not dangerous and helps you do what you desire in your life. 

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

  • crowds
  • 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.

What is social anxiety or social phobia?

Social anxiety is a discomfort with situations involving other people. This includes experiences such as:

  • Avoiding situations where attention may be on the person
  • Discomfort speaking in front of others and talking in a group
  • Lots of time spent thinking about what others may think of them
  • Worry that others will negatively judge them, reject them, or misunderstand them
  • Fear of others noticing that you are anxious

Social anxiety can result in discomfort with necessary interactions, such within work or school contexts, making phone calls, and limiting relationships. We can help- and social anxiety therapy is highly effective!

How might treatment work?

Project Yes therapists are anxiety experts! Our therapists are very experienced with the process of Exposure Therapy and ExRP (Exposure + Response Prevention) as well as other skills that can be helpful. Counseling for anxiety involves learning new skills.

  • Exposure therapy entails slowly exposing clients to their phobias in a structured in a manageable way, in order to reduce the anxiety feelings that often come from that phobia.
  • The therapy will include home practice. The work is challenging AND the treatment is highly effective!
  • For those living or coming for anxiety treatment near Durham NC. your therapist may meet you out in the community to help you get more comfortable with the practice exercises. We also are experienced in helping you in session virtually. This is the case whether it is social anxiety therapy or other anxiety treatment.
  • Don’t worry, you won’t have to go into the deep end of the pool to start!
  • We also implement Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) tools to support reclaiming your life.
  • As helpful, we will teach you tools to help manage intense emotions and also stay connected to why you want to overcome anxiety. We help you make sure you are walking towards your valued-driven life!

Are you ready to get started?

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"DR TATYANA KHOLODKOV is a knowledgable advocate for all sources of support for all people! She is an endlessly present guide for healthy living and generosity of spirit. She is wise and always looking to learn more ways to expand her capacity."

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Excellent all around on so many levels. Perfect mix of asana and pranayama. Teacher has excellent level of knowledge about advanced poses and how to move in and out safely as well as hints about focusing attention. Creative flow used as well as variety in postures that aren't typically in a usual class flow. Appropriate level of spiritual direction and suggestions. Perhaps one of the best teachers I've ever experienced!

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I loved how supportive Tatyana was in encouraging us to try new poses or variations and it was okay if it didn't work out, and at the same time did not push us to do anything too far beyond our body's limit. I liked the focus on the mental and meditative aspect, which is what I love about yoga - so many yoga classes seem more like exercise classes these days, but this class seemed like it truly embraced the full experience of yoga.

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