WHAT IS A PHOBIA?
Any uncontrolled, persistent, irrational fear that is accompanied by a compelling desire to avoid the object, activity, or situation that provokes the fear, is called a phobia. As far as the brain is concerned it is no different from PTSD. The same neuronal pathways are involved
DEFINITION OF PHOBIAS
Phobias are intense fears of objects or situations that pose little or no harm in reality. Certain phobias may have their own names, such as acrophobia (fear of heights) and agoraphobia (fear of open or public spaces).
Some phobias are related to specific things such as spiders, water, or enclosed places. Others are more general, such as fear of social mishaps while communicating, or fear of being out in public.
SIGNS OF PHOBIAS
Those who suffer from phobias become extremely anxious when exposed to an object or situation that triggers their fear. Some sufferers may become anxious from simply thinking about their fear. Individuals may take great measures to avoid trigger objects or situations.
SYMPTOMS OF PHOBIAS
Phobias commonly cause panic attacks, characterized by difficulty breathing, sweating, racing heartbeat, and confusion. Many individuals have specific triggers that make them feel nervous or frightened. Fear transitions into phobia when a situation causes an extreme response. The response lingers with the sufferer on a long-term basis, possibly forever, resulting in panic attacks whenever objects or situations that spark the trigger are presented.
Once a phobia exists, sufferers may go out of their way to avoid triggers. Depending on the nature of the phobia, this can make it difficult for sufferers to work, drive, care for children, spend time outside, or participate in other essential activities.
CAUSES OF PHOBIAS
Exact causes of phobias are variable, and are often unknown. Some studies indicate that phobias are genetic. It is also theorized that childhood trauma, or observation of family members being frightened or injured, can stick with a child through adulthood, resulting in phobias. Since many phobias develop early in life, adults may not recall the specific events that cause phobias to develop.
TREATMENT FOR PHOBIAS
The amygdala has to learn that it is possible to visualise the incident without panicking, and the most reliable and least invasive way to do this is through the psychological method known as the ‘rewind technique’. This technique is a refinement of one taught on NLP courses for many years. This is a guided imagery technique, which allows the brain to revisit the traumatic events in a dissociated way while being physically extremely calm, so that the amygdala can reinterpret the memory patterns as non-threatening. What I learnt from my training with Human Givens that this version of the technique was refined, as a result of finding out why it worked. when properly delivered, it reliably relieves the nightmares, panic attacks, flashbacks and intrusive memories.
Extensive clinical experience shows it to be a more cost effective and successful treatment than the treatments recommended by NICE guidelines, namely EMDR and CBT that take many sessions and are often only partially successful.
Treatment is safe (unlike critical incident debriefing for example, which research shows may increase rates of PTSD).
Treatment is non-voyeuristic (It is suitable for victims of sexual assault, beating or any kind of humiliation, as the victim do not have to tell the therapist details what happened.)
Please contact Secure Mind Solutions on 07444 928 382 if you require this service.