Are you afraid of heights?

Posted October 3rd, 2017

Fear of heights

A fear of heights may be irrational and excessive to the onlooker, but it’s a very real anxiety disorder and a frightening experience for those who suffer from it. Of course, there are varying degrees of severity – some people may be just about able to manage a flight journey, while others would rather drive an extra 50 miles than go over a bridge.

There are actually several height related phobias including:

• Acrophobia – an extreme fear of heights where the person may only be able to function at ground level
• Aeroacrophobia – an irrational fear of open high places such as being in an aeroplane or in a hot air balloon, or on top of a mountain
• Illyngophobia – an extreme fear of spinning and dizziness, usually due to the height
• Climacophobia – an irrational fear of going/climbing down for a great height such as ladders, stairs or slopes
• Bathmophobia – an extreme fear of stairs or slopes, regardless of whether they’re being climbed

The symptoms of height related anxiety vary from one person to the next and can include sweating and cold flushes, trembling and dizziness, a racing heartbeat and a sense of panic, tight chest, nausea, numbness and many others.

If you encounter someone who is in an acute state of panic, you can help by providing empathy and reassurance. Stay with the person and, if possible, move them to a quiet space where the view to the ground cannot be seen. Be calm and explain in short sentences that s/he is not in danger and that you will help them get back down as soon as possible.

Living with a phobia means living in fear – but it doesn’t have to be this way. Therapy can be extremely effective for treating phobias such as being scared of heights. Counselling can help you confront your fear head on and learn to overcome it completely. The particular treatment option depends on the individual concerned, but the most common approaches include:

• Talking therapy (Counselling)
• Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
• Exposure Therapy

Alternative therapies such as Hypnotherapy, Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), or Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) may also be helpful.

Alternative therapies such as Hypnotherapy, Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), or Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) may also be helpful.

At KlearMinds, our therapists have many years’ experience of dealing with all kinds of phobias including a fear of heights. For more information or to book an appointment, please call 0333 7720256 or get in touch here.

Fear of heights - Trift Bridge

Filled Under: Phobias

What are you afraid of?

Posted April 4th, 2017

Everyone is afraid of something, but when your fear is so specific that it triggers excessive levels of anxiety or panic, you could be suffering from a phobia. Phobias are distressing emotions that are initiated by fears, both real and imagined, that are simply out of proportion. Irrational fears about a place or situation, an object or an animal can make it difficult to live a normal life.

Around 10 million people in the UK suffer from some type of phobia. But what exactly are people so afraid of? The 5 most common phobias in the world are:

1 – Arachnophobia – fear of spiders

An excessive fear of spiders and other arachnids such as scorpions is the most common animal phobia in the world. Often, the cause is the perception that some species of spider are deadly dangerous and the human survival instinct kicks in. Arachnophobes often go to extreme lengths to make sure their surroundings are spider free.

2 – Ophidiophobia – fear of snakes

Affecting nearly a third of the adult human population, a fear of snakes also has evolutionary roots, since venomous snakes can kill. In extreme cases, ophidiophobia can stop a person from going camping or hiking, or take part in any activity where snakes or other reptiles have a chance of appearing.

3 – Acrophobia – fear of heights

An irrational fear of heights or falling from height is a phobia whereby the sufferer gets highly agitated or panics – which could affect their ability to climb down to safety. Extreme acrophobics can’t even tolerate stepping on or off a chair without suffering symptoms.

4 – Agoraphobia – fear of open or crowded spaces

A fear of open spaces, or of crowded spaces, can be a debilitating condition that prevents the sufferer from going out in public – from shopping centres to concerts or theatres and many other social situations. There’s intense panic even at the thought or sight of such a space, and the feeling that it will be impossible to escape from. Agoraphobics often display avoidance behaviour and limit their range of activities, suffering from depression.

5 – Cynophobia – fear of dogs

Another common animal phobia, the fear of dogs (and often also of cats) can lead to even more limiting social behaviour since domestic animals are a common sight in residential areas. The condition typically develops in childhood and, interestingly, nearly ¾ of cynophobics are women.

Other types of phobia can involve the fear of flying (pteromerhanophobia), fear of germs (mysophobia), fear of injections (trypanophobia), fear of failure (atychiphobia), fear of abandonment (autophobia), fear of social situations and many others.

If you suffer from any type of phobia, you don’t have to live the rest of your life in fear. There are many therapy options available to effectively deal with a phobia, allowing you to face and overcome your fears once and for all. They include Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Exposure Therapy and an approach based in Integrative Psychotherapy.

The first step to a lasting change is to make contact with an experienced and sympathetic therapist. Why not call the friendly team at KlearMinds today on 0333 7720256 to book an appointment?

Filled Under: Phobias

How CBT Therapy Can Help Treat Phobias

Posted May 17th, 2015

cognitive behavioural therapy for phobias

 

Certain fears are natural and reasonable, but others seem excessive in the face of the level of danger presented. Such fears cause unnecessary pain and distress. They can undermine self-confidence, block enjoyment and prevent you from doing things you might need or want to do.

If you suffer from an intense fear or dread regarding certain situations or things, you may be suffering from a phobia.

Cognitive behavioural therapy is a particularly effective treatment for people wishing to deal with phobias. (more…)

Filled Under: CBT, Phobias
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