How to Get Over a Fear of Dogs

Dogs are supposedly to be man's best friend. But that does not stop them from being scary at times – after all, one of their functions as our best friend is to protect us from things. So they can bare their teeth, bark like a four legged burglar alarm and generally be aggressive if they need to be. What can you do if you have a fear of dogs?

Find a friendly dog ​​to train yourself with

In much the same way as Caspar is a friendly ghost, there are friendly dogs who you can practice your skills on and start ot wean yourself off the fear you have of our canine friends.

Generally speaking, dogs do not have the canine equivalent of small man syndrome, so the smaller dogs are often the best place to start this.

Find one of your friends who has a dog that's generally friendly – one that is good with children is an excellent start – and see how you get on.

Start by being in the same house as the dog. Maybe with the doors closed so that there's no immediate risk of an encounter with your four legged foe.

Then move up to the dog being in the same room as you, but on a lead that's firmly held by their owner. So long as you've chosen the “correct” dog, there should be no bare teeth or growls. Just a tentative wag of a tail which will show you that the furry creature is not all bad.

After that, see whether you can bring yourself to actually touch the dog. Bring your hand slowly up to it, so that the dog can sniff you (that's what dogs do on a regular basis – their sense of smell is acute).

There's a chance that at this stage the dog will try to lick your hand – that's fine. Allow this to happen, rather than instinctively reclamation from this friendly advance.

Finally, see whether you can bring yourself to stroke the dog you've met. If it helps, think of it as a live, warm, cuddly toy that will interact with you. There's a good chance that the dog you used to be scared of will react well to this – a lack of growing is a good indication, tail wagging is another one (though some dogs can confuse you by growing or barking and wagging their tail at the same time!)

Think about hypnosis

Helping you to conquer your fear of dogs is one of the things that hypnosis does well.

If you've tried the first approach but still can not stand to be in the same room as a dog, let along pet one, then it's time to get your rational mind out of the equation and that's the kind of thing that hypnosis does naturally.

Listening to a hypnosis download is discrete – there's no need to tell anyone what you're doing – and the track will work with your subconscious mind to change how you react to an encounter with a dog. This is a simple process and does not need anything more than you listening to the hypnosis MP3 and letting it work its magic.

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Fear Vs Phobia – What’s The Difference?

A lot of the time, the words fear and phobia are used interchangeably. But the English language has a lot of subtleties and the distinction between the two words – whistle subtle – is real. So, what's the difference between a fear of something and a phobia of something?

What is fear?

The dictionary definition of fear is “an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat.”

Which does not sound too ominous at first glance.

After all, an unpleasant emotion could be almost anything from a tear coming to your eye right the way through to out and out revulsion. And all points in between.

Fear can be a good thing. It's the kind of emotion that causes us to flee from situations and events that could be harmful to us. So that cliff edge that you were about to step over causes a feeling of fear that's powerful enough for you to take a step back and save yourself from plunging into the abyss.

Likewise the confrontation with an angry wolf or bear or automobile (to use a more likely occurrence) can induction enough fear to give your survival instincts enough time to kick in and save you from an unpleasant experience.

So, strictly speaking, a fear is based on a reasonably rational assumption about something that could cause you harm in some way, shape or form.

What is a phobia?

Again, to quote the dictionary definition, a phobia is “an extreme or irrational fear of or aversion to something.”

So, at its most basic, a phobia is a fear that's on steroids. The normal fear you have of something has taken a step up and is now bigger and bolder than a regular fear or worry about something. Chances are that you've broken out in a cold sweat or are already running for the hills rather than facing whatever it is that you have a phobia of.

But delving deer into that dictionary definition, you can see that a phobia does not have to be based on anything that's actually rational.

A fear of a grizzly bear that turned extreme would still be based on the fact that the creature is likely to be more powerful than you and is not really Yogi Bear in disguise.

An irrational fear is something different completely, which is where it turns into a phobia.

Phobias can cover all sorts of topics. They can be an extreme version of a fear of heights where, for instance, you will not go within half a mile of a cliff edge.

Or they can get you to panic about something that near enough everyone else beats as normal – crossing a bridge, being part of a crowd, that kind of thing.

Do fears and phobias ever meet?

There's sometimes a crossover between fears and phobias.

Something like a fear of public speaking is quite common. But if you take it to an extreme then it can turn itself into a phobia and mean that you will do everything you can to avoid the problem.

So there's not always a clear cut difference between fears and phobias.

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The Fear of Old People

So you do not like old people, I get it. They smell like medicine, they have tubes connecting their splotchy tissue-paper arms to all sorts of machines, and they always have white gobs in the corners of their mouths. You may suffer from Gerontophobia. To those with an old person phobia, the elderly may well be a constant reminder of the decaying existence that lies just beyond the river bend, and of course – death.

I get that you love your grandma, and so do I (love mine that is). So why is it that she grosses you out so much?

It is said that the fear of the elderly is caused by young people not believing that they share any common ground with old folks. If young is beautiful then old is a saggy sack. If young is tomorrow then old is so last year. On the flip-flop side, old people can resent youngsters for everything they no longer have and in turn fear their own aging process. The thought of getting put out on the ice floe with the best years behind you would probably suck.

It is this fear that fuels the ever-growing Anti-Aging Market which is estimated at over 500 Billion dollars worldwide. With so much to gain many companies spend a lot of money getting the message out there that young = good and old = bad. It is a concept very much integrated with our culture where celebrities look younger every year and natural aging is the way of the past.

How can I get over my fear of old people and getting old?

1. Become aware that your fear of the elderly and aging is not yours. It was likely put there large corporations so you will buy buy!

2. A recent article in The Economist found that the average person is happy in their youth, sinks deeper and deeper into depression as they age until they hit that “mid-life crisis” age around 50 years old. As a we age beyond 50, people tend to get more and more happy!

3. Get to know the elderly in your life as real people. Hear their stories and have some empathy. These people had a first kiss, had big dreams, made sacrifices, had families, loved, lost, and all the rest of what makes up a life.

4. Remember that it is a lucky person who lives long enough to gross young people out!

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Pteromerhanophobia – What Causes a Fear of Flying?

Pteromerhanophobia or a fear of flying has the potential to seriously affect your life in more ways than you would think. For those that suffer, the results have included stopping flying altogether, causing job opportunities to be missed, family gatherings and holidays canceled or avoided. A totally debilitating phobia.

What causes a fear of flying will vary from person to person. A previous bad event such as severe turbulence may be enough, whereas others may just feel anxious through feeling trapped at altitude. It could also involve a mistrust of the flight crew or a total lack of confidence in the aircraft to remain airborne.

What is important to remember however, is that there is really nothing to fear, whatever the undering individual cause of the anxiety. Even those that have flow through turbulence have never been in real danger, because the aircraft of today are manufactured to such a high standard that they can easily cope with the sort of turbulence that may typically be encountered. Even danger from engine failure is drastically minimized due to the sophisticated level of the safety systems installed.

That is not to say that anxiety and panic attacks that occurs during a flight are not uncomfortable, far from it.The physical and emotional reactions of someone with a fear of flying are just real as if something dangerous actually were happening.

Some of the more common symptoms that may be present include:

– Breathing difficulties

– Chest pains and heart palpitations

– Sweating and dizziness

– Vomiting

– Muscle tension

– Dry mouth

– Abdominal pains

The feeling of loss of control can be overpowering and convince sufferers that they are in extreme danger. Despite frightening, this perception of danger is just that, and not real. Easy to say, but true neverheless.

A really good way of overcoming this fear of flying is to follow a systematic approach to treatment, which covers how safe flying is, as well as teaching how to modify reactions to flying, so enabling an end to anxiety and panic whilst flying.

One such system is the Takeoff Today Program, which teachers all this and more. It makes use of written, audio and video material, as well as free information and reports to download. All this instructional material helps sufferers answer their most common questions, by using interviews with pilots, flight crews and other experts within the aviation industry, all aimed to help you overcome your fear of flying.

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10 Strange And Weird Phobias

It is not unusual for people to have a fear or two, like a fear of flying, height, open spaces, driving, but for some, this fear can become excessive and irrational. At this level, the fear becomes a phobia. People will have different trigger thresholds, the point at which the phobia condition takes over.

A phobia can be defined as an intense, irrational and perpetual fear of situations, people or activities, which if not appreciated and have the potential to ruin personal, work and social life.

To have some fear is necessary to avoid dangerous situations and in most cases is reasonable and rational. However, what most people would consider mundane, harmless and ordinary, to some would be frightening and develop into full blown phobias.

The following are just some examples of weird phobias:

Ablutophobia

This is a phobia of cleaning, bathing and washing, more prevalent in emotionally unstable women and children.

Chorophobia

Very difficult to believe, but this is a phobia of dancing, generally felt to be a joyful and enjoyable pastime.

Consecotaleophobia

Fear of chopsticks! Probably arising from a previous traumatic experience.

Arachibutyrophobia

The fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth, so swallowing rather than chewing is the order of the day amongst sufferers.

Anablephobia

The fear of looking up. Just think what sufferers miss out on. The sky, sunsets, rainbows …..

Estiophobia

The fear of clothes, or more specifically, a particular type or material. Usually, this condition is found in those that are overweight and middle-aged, who think that clothes make them look worse.

Genuphobia

This is the fear of knees, which could be your own or those of someone else.

Scopophobia

The fear of being looked at, which has obvious adverse implications on social activities.

Euphobia

Some people have a fear of hearing good news, believing that bad news is sure to follow!

Allodoxaphobia

This is the fear of the opinions of other people, particularly about personality, clothes, appearance, home, in fact just about everything!

This phobias list could go on and on, with endless examples of what many people believe to be strange and weird phobias. To those that suffer however, these phobias are far from strange, but are debilitating and life affecting to say the least.

If you are unfortunate enough to have fears, anxieties or phobias, you will need some sort of support to prevent them from taking over your life. Fortunately, there are several different approaches that you can use to lead you to successful outcomes.

A so-called weird phobia is something that is considered to be treatable nowdays, either by using therapy options or medication, both of which will help in finding solutions to your fears.

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Vomit Phobia – What Is It And Where To Get Help!

Vomit phobia or emetophobia as it is medically known is an acute and irrational fear of vomiting, or seeing someone else else vomiting. Also, the fear of vomiting sufferer will often have the same symptoms when they feel nauseated or even if another person is feeling sick. The symptoms of vomit phobia will also often occur when the person is watching television or at the cinema and the actor is being sick or feeling sick. To the emetobic it makes no difference that it is on screen and not real. The phobia will still arise when it is for real or not.

The sight of someone vomiting in public places or on a movie screen can severely impact the social lives of a vomit phobia sufferer. They will often avoid places and situations were there the potential for the sight of vomit. Bars, clubs, going to fairgrounds, airplane and boat travel can all be off limits to an emetobic. Many emetophobia sufferers will not attend doctors, hospitals or even dental surgeries as the possibility of vomiting increases in the emetophobics mind.

Emetophobia Symptoms – Impact on life of a sufferer

Many people have a fear of vomiting, however they are not classed as an emetophobia sufferer without the fear of vomiting has progressed to the stage of disrupted the persons life.

As well as avoiding public places like the ones discussed, a vomit phobia sufferer will often show signs of high levels of stress and anxiety with any situation, real or imagined that could possibly induce vomiting. This can affect on job prospects and personal goals and aspirations can be restricted even if not appreciated. In extreme cases, women who are emetopic can put off having children due to the morning sickness associated with childbirth.

Usually an emetophobia sufferer will develop some form of food rituals whereby they will only eat specific foods, and usually only small portions that they consider safe from any side affects. This can manifest into the sufferer constantly checking food for freshness and incessant washing of food to remove dirt or germs. This could lead to Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) in extreme cases.

Emetophobia Treatment

Although to date there is not a vast amount of research done on emetophobia, there are several options available to a sufferer to help increase fear of vomiting.

The first option is to consult your own doctor. They can provide advice and possible avenues for treatment. They can provide anti-nausea drugs which can relieve symptoms in the short term. They can also provide anti-depressants if the phobia has caused depression in the sufferer, which can easily happen to a vomit phobia person. This is obviously not a long term solution to the illness as it does not get to the root of the problem that the emetobic has. Drugs of any kind will not cure the condition at this time, only relieve the symptoms temporarily.

Many sufferers avoid visiting their physician as they believe that they will not understand or take their condition seriously. Thankfully, this attitude in the medical profession is very rare these days as more evidence into this illness is uncovered. Sadly though, for the emetobic they will believe that nobody can help them and avoid making contact, keeping their condition to themselves. This will often make the situation they find themselves in worse as they try to avoid confronting their emetophobia illness.

Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)

This therapy is a structured form of self help that the emetophobia sufferer will undertake. There is evidence to suggest that this form of therapy is helpful to many people with emetophobia. It must be understood though that for this emetophobia treatment to be successful there will be hard work involved for the person with this illness. Also, this form of treatment can be expensive.

Overcoming Health Anxiety by David Veale and Rob Wilson. This book explains in detail what CBT is all about. It also has a section on using CBT in treating emetophobia. Highly recommended reading if you are at all considering using Cognitive Behavior Therapy as part of your emetophobia treatment.

Hypnotherapy

Hypnotherapy is another possible emetophobia treatment that a sufferer can explore. But again this form of treatment can be expensive and there is no comprehensive evidence at this time to confirm if this will provide a permanent solution to emetophobia.

Self Help – Online and offline

Self help can involve talking to friends and, or family members, but often this is impossible to a lot of emetophobics due to the reasons already discussed. So forums online can be a good place for a sufferer of this condition to get involved with as they understand and can relate to the sufferers condition and way of life with this illness. There is a link on my website to the best emetophobia and anxiety forums for you to check out.

Emetophobia Recovery System

The Emetophobia Recovery System is the only online program that I know of that is strictly for the treatment of emetophobia. There are of course many anxiety related self help courses on the market that could help. They are however not targeted to this condition and are in most cases much more expensive than the Emetophobia Recovery System.

In this course you will be given a step-by-step program to tackle the condition head on and help you to overcome your fear of vomiting permanently. Mental health professionals have tested this program and recommend its use in emetophobia treatment.

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Overcoming The Fear Of Vomiting – 3 Quick Tips

1 – Reading of a medical book on the fear of vomiting will give you an understanding on how beneficial to the body actually vomiting really is. This can help you in overcoming the fear of vomiting by easing your anxiety when you realize vomiting does not harm the body in most cases. A good example medical book to read would be the long winded book book: Vomiting: Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome, Emetophobia, Mr. Creosote, Postoperative Nausea and Vomiting, Hematemesis, Emetophilia – [paperback]

If the above medical book is too scientific and / or is too graphic in nature for you then I would recommend: Living With Emetophobia: Coping With Extreme Fear Of Vomiting by Nicolette Heaton-Harris and Linda Dean – [paperback]. This book is written by a lifelong emetophobe and gives help and advice on dealing with emetophobia from an actual sufferers point of view. Both books can be picked up online at Amazon or a Barnes & Noble store.

2 – A more proactive way to overcome your fear of vomiting is to use self-hypnosis. Now this will mean that you have to confront your fears by concentrating your thoughts on someone else being sick and yourself. The best option to try this would be in a darkened room and if it helps you to relax play some soothing favorite music that is put on low in the background. You need to close your eyes and relax as much as possible, then you should visualize someone vomiting in your mind. Try and keep calm through the visualization process. Once you have gained control of visualizing another person vomiting, it is time to train your hypnosis thoughts on yourself actually vomiting in your minds eye. This will probably take longer to master with it being yourself in the visualization technique. As long as you stay relaxed and keep practicing, it will become easier over time. Your anxiety will then begin to fade away with ungoing practice.

3 – Online forums and support groups are a good way to make contact with others who suffer from emetophobia. You can post details about what you are going through plus read others stories on how they deal with this illness. They can refer to what you are going through through a daily basis in battling your vomit phobia.

Keep in mind that your vomit phobia is a treatable condition and you do not have to keep this illness to yourself. Hopefully the above tips will give you some help in overcoming your fear of vomiting.

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How to Overcome Phobias

A phobia, from a Greek word “phobos means” fear “, is an irrational, intense and persistent fear of certain situations, activities, things, animals, or people. The main symptom is the excessive and unreasonable desire to avoid the frightened stimulus. Generally, when the fear is beyond one's control and is interfering with daily life, we call it a phobia.

How a phobia works.
It is possible that phobias are locked into brain 1 (Primitive) and operate from there at a core level. This part of the brain is pretty crude and basic in its responses to the world. It is concerned with such things as survival, flight or fight, self preservation and territorial / spacial boundaries.

Phobias work the same way for us as Pavlov's dogs. Some biological response has been tied to some “trigger” or stimulus (usually a result of some emotionally charged incident.) This stimulus can be just thinking about something. For example the way a person thinks about being in closed space can have a substantial effects on his biology. These feelings can cause the triggering of a variety of feelings-including fear and panic.

Facts about removing phobias
• Removing a phobia is about dis-abling fear associated with a situation, activity, things animals or people. The aim of
• A phobia is a Nominalisation of behavior. It is the behavior associated with the phobia that you want to get rid of.
• Remember that Fear is an essential emotion designed to keep us safe because a bit of healthy fear is all that is needed most of the time.
• When you focus on your phobia, you lose control of your life, rather your phobias will. Remember that what you focus on gets bigger.
• If we talk to someone about our phobias, we will be able to get rid of it. Do not do it alone.
• Pre verbal reaction- children learn to fear when they are young / babies from their parents.
• Our brains associate phobias with something else. Such as fear of conflict can be associated with growing up within a violent home.
• People get phobic reactions because they do not have enough information- how do you generate information?

Questions to help you dig up the root the origin of the phobia you have.
• How old were you when you decided that?
• What is it about your phobia that you want to change?
• What is associated with that behavior?

Remember that phobic reactions are experiences that can be reframed.

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Overcoming Driving Phobia in Four Steps

Individuals can develop a driving phobia for many different reasons. When they do so, a mere thought of a car can lead to symptoms such as dry throats, headaches, nausea, sweaty hands, and panic attacks, Due to this reason individuals who suffer from phobia usually not drive a car, those who can often need to stop in mid-drive. Thus, individuals suffering from this incapacitating disorder often suffer problems in their social life, work life, and in their self-esteem. However, this does not mean that individuals suffering from phobia are without help or support. In the contrast, there are various methods available to individuals that suffer from driving phobia. Some of these methods include self-help methods, therapy, and medication. The fallowing steps are self-help methods that can help individuals overcome their driving fear.

Due to the fact that you will be trying to overcome your driving phobia by yourself you need to start with simple and small steps. The fist step is for you to just sit in your car and turn the engine on. The second step is to actually drive your car. Go around the block a couple of times and then go back home. The third step involves getting out of your safety drive zone. As soon as you feel that you can drive beyond your block do so, but try to take a driving buddy. Someone that will keep you company and provide support. The fourth and final step involves you getting back on the road by yourself. Remember, the key to overcoming your driving phobia is to start slow; after all, slow and steady win the race.

Understanding and Overcoming Your Driving Phobia

Feeling fear is a part of life; in fact fear is a survival mechanism that kicks in when we are in danger. Being afraid is normal, however, when does being afraid turn into a phobia? Phobia is being afraid without a justified cause. For example, driving fear occurs when an individual witnesses or is in an accident and afterwards is affected just by thinking negative thought about driving. Thus the fear becomes reinforced and the driving phobia begins. Phobia is a disability that can affect people of all rounds of life and when it does it can have negative effects in the individuals social life, career, health, and even their self esteem. Therefore, it is vital that people suffering from driving phobia understand their problem and seek professional help.

Driving phobia is an endless cycle of fear that repeats itself over and over again until you decide to put a stop to it. When you realize that you have a problem driving your car, do not ignore it. Ignoring the problem only makes the problem worse because it reinforces the problem. Although facing your fears is not an easy task it can be done, all you need is the appropriate method that will work for you, some positive reinforcing in your part, and time. Since this phobia is a mental problem the best method to overcome it is therapy. However, you can also try to bypass driving phobia by your self by fallingowing easy tips and taking baby steps, this method is called self-help. Regardless of what method you choose, you need to keep in mind that overcoming your driving phobia will take time.

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Fighting the Fear of Flying

Summer has finally arrived, and many of us are looking forward to sunshiny days at the beach, hiking in the mountains, or sightseeing in a foreign country. For some of us, however, a looming summer vacation is not a happy prospect. It means an airplane flight, and these people inwardly quake at the very thought of getting on an airplane. They may fear losing control and panicking during the flight, or suffocating, or dying when the plane unexpectedly takes a nose dive.

Fear or anxiety comes in many forms. Some people have social anxiety, which is a fear of speaking in front of groups or of going into new social situations. Some people experience panic attacks during stressful situations such as taking an exam. A fear of one specific place or thing such as heights, spiders, or plane flights, is called a phobia , a word that comes from the Greek word phobos , or fear. A phobia arises when a person has a bad experience involving the feared thing or place. With the fear of flying, sometimes the person was on an airplane flight where there was an equipment failure and the plane had to turn back. This scared all the passengers. Perhaps the person lost a loved one in an airplane accident. Or despite they were on a plane when another passenger had a heart attack. This one scary experience becomes generalized in their mind and feelings, with the result that for them any plane trip is associated with fear.

For me, as a family therapist, summer brings clients who want help overcoming their fear of flying. Of all the strategies in my therapy toolbox, I have found one particular strategy most helpful to combat the fear of flying. This strategy is paradoxical, because I prescribe to the client the very symptom for which she is seeking help. I ask the client to devote fifteen minutes a day to conquering her fear. She has to be alone, in a comfortable place such as her bedroom. She then sets her cell phone or other timer for fifteen minutes. Then she conjures up the most fearful airplane journey she can imagine and starts having the worst fears possible. After fifteen minutes, she can stop having the fear and go about her usual activities.

Most clients come back after a single session and tell me that they feel more in control of their fear. One young client, a seventeen-year-old boy named Mitchell, came up with his own unique variation on the strategy. He did the fifteen minute exercise while he was mountain biking. When he reached the summit of a hill, he set his cell phone timer and thought on his worst fears for fifteen minutes. At the next session two weeks later, Mitchell told me that now he could control his fear by using the power of his own mind. That is exactly the point of the exercise. The mind conjures up the fear and then stops the fear. Like other paradoxical strategies of prescribing the symptom, prescribing fear to combat fear is a powerful intervention.

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The Top 3 Things Most People Are Afraid Of

Deep down, most of us are afraid of something. Whether it's a reasonably rational fear or one that we've rather not admit we have. But – collectively – what are our top fears?

1. Fear of Public Speaking

This is usually quoted as the largest phobia on the planet. Even higher than fear of death (number two on this list).

Why should this be?

Public speaking brings up lots of different issues.

For a start, there's a chance that you'll embarrass yourself or somehow make yourself look stupid. Never mind that most people in the audience will just be glad that it's not them on the stage and will probably be secretly Tweeting or texting rather than listening to you. It's the thought that they could be paying attention and that you might – just might – mess up that worries public speakers the most.

There's also the worry of “drying up”. You've probably cringed when this happens on shows like Dragon's Den or television talent shows. And the worry of it happening to you kicks in, maybe even causing the issue that you were worried about.

The trick with public speaking is to pretend that you're addressing just one or maybe two people. That. And practice. The more practiced and confident you are, the more likely you are to overcome your fear of public speaking.

2. Fear of Death

Sorry to tell you this but – at least with our current technology – death is inevitable. Religion promises us an after but that's not been proven. Some people believe in reincarnation and use instances of deja vu to show that this is true. But we have not really got a clue where these are right, so it's probably best to assume that once we die, that's it.

So, why are we scared of death?

After all, once our heart stops beating we will have no conscious feeling.

It's probably the lead-up to death that scares people. The thought of maybe a prolonged and possibly painful illness. Leaving stuff undone or uncompleted. No longer being with loved ones.

All those feelings and more contribute to our fear of death, causing it to be high up on most people's list of fears.

3. Fear of Spiders

There are evolutionary reasons for the phobia of spiders. Some of them can bite and poison us. But a lot of people have taken that deep rooted fear and translated it into much more common – and harmless – spiders that we are much more likely to encounter.

Of course, that knowledge does not exactly help when we're in a face-off with an inch long creature that realizes we're not its next meal but we do not.

Which, in a nutshell, is why so many people are afraid of spiders and will run a mile rather than humanely help them on to pastures new.

Of course, there are lots more fears that people have – some are also common like a fear of needles or a phobia of flying that causes us to take a long road trip rather than a short hop on a plane. Others are less common, such as a fear of fish or a worry that aliens are already taking over the planet.

So if your phobia is not in the top 3 list, fear not, it's still real enough for you.

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Recognizing and Defeating Agoraphobia

The term “agora” in agoraphobia “is a Greek word and translates as” marketplace. “Now the term is more commonly used to describe a specific type of anxiety disorder that causes a person to avoid any situation that may cause a panic attack. , this means that an agoraphobic experiences extreme anxiety or fear if required to leave their home.

Many agoraphobics experience a great deal of anxiety, to the point of panic, in any public setting. This is especially true of any place where there is a crowd, such as a sporting event. The levels of anxiety can be so pronounced that they, literally, trap the individual in their own home.

As with many other types of phobias, treating agoraphobia means facing your fear and that is always very hard. But, there are specific medications and therapies available to help you get past your fears and live a better life.

SYMPTOMS
If you suspect you suffer from agoraphobia, or know someone who might, these are the symptoms most commonly found:
• Afraid of crowded places
• Feeling of helplessness
• Fear of being alone anywhere
• Afraid of being “trapped” somewhere you can not “escape” such as an airplane, train, or elevator
• Being overly dependent on others
• Not being able to leave your house
• Afraid you may “lose control” in a public place
• Feeling that your physical body is somehow disconnected, or not real

CAUSES
Agoraphobia rarely happens without a panic disorder as well. Most commonly it is a complication of a panic disorder which is a disorder that brings about episodes of fear so intense that they cause equally intense physical symptoms. At their worst, panic attacks are terrifying. So much so that the physical symptoms can easily convince you that you are experiencing a heart attack or are dying.

Some research suggests that agoraphobia can be developed if you mentally begin to make a connection between your panic attack and the situations where those attacks have taken place. Naturally, you will probably want to avoid those situations in the future to prevent more panic attacks. Those who suffer from agoraphobia are most likely to steer clear of any circumstance where it would be embarrassing or hard to leave if a panic attack does happen.

Occidentally, this fear becomes so overwhelming that the sufferer is not capable of leaving the perceived safety of their home. But, in most cases, agoraphobics can beat their fears in most circumstances if they are in the company of a trusted family member or companion.

COPING
Regardless of the severity of the agoraphobia, having to live with the symptoms makes life more difficult. While professional treatment will help to get past the fears or, at least, successfully manage them you can also do some things on your own to help the problem.

Avoid Drugs and Alcohol -abusing either illegal drugs or alcohol will not help. In fact, they will make your panic attack symptoms much worse.

Relax- There are many techniques you can learn and practice at home to help. Some suggestions are yoga or meditation.

Do not Avoid Your Fear- This is very hard but practicing going to more places where you are not comfortable will render them less frightening. Take small steps at first and ask family or friends for help.

Take Your Medication -Your therapist undublishedly told you it can take a week or two to begin to see the effects when you start on a specific drug so stick with it and continue to take your medications exactly as your doctor specifies.

Also, do not stop taking a prescribed medication without consulting your doctor. Suddenly stopping some medications can cause withdrawal symptoms.

Be Healthy -Eat a balanced diet, exercise at least a bit every day, and allow enough time for a good night's sleep.

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Are Women Genetically Programmed to Be Afraid of Spiders?

Maybe men, who are forever being called into the kitchen to rid the room of spiders, may need to be a little more understanding with their female partners and should learn not to too hard on them for their fear and phobia.

Researchers have recently discovered that women may actually be genetically pre-pre-programmed to instinctively be more afraid of our cute little arachnids than men.

Almost from birth, girls younger than a year old learn to associate images and illustrations of spiders as represented with scary faces. A lot sooner, it would seem according to research, than boys of the same age.

According to these same researchers, during the course of human evolution women have become instinctively more aware and cautious about potentially dangerous or harmful animals. During further research into this theory the scientists showed ten boys and ten girls a color picture of a spider paired with a scary cartoon character, while they sat on the lap of their parent. This test was designed to try and teach the children to be afraid of spiders. They also then showed them two alternative pairings. One was a spider alongside a smiley face and the other a flower next to a wrinkled face.

The results were surprising. The girls actually spent more time looking at the picture of the happy face than they did the frightened face, which researchers concluded is due to the fact that they 'expected' spiders to be associated with fear.

The girls were actually more distrustful of the smiley face as they instinctively associating the spider with the wrinkled face.

When the boys were tested in the exact same way, they were found to have looked at both sets of images for exactly the same length of time. Showing that the anxiety symptoms in children of both sexes did in fact differ.

The prognosis then was that the boys had no pre-conditioned response which would cause them to associate the spider with fear.

In conclusion the researchers summed up these experiments as showing that girls as young as 11 months have already Leart the relationship between negative facial expression and a relevant frustrating trigger (such as a spider or a snake), where as boys of the same age have not.

Based on these reactions it was summarized that because woman can only procreate a limited number of times when compared to men and that they are also in nature the primary carers for their offspring during their childhood, that evolution had provided a built in wariness, where venomous spiders or snakes etc are concerned. These may have been dangers that were faced millions of years ago, when searching for food and as the threat not only to themselves but also their offspring would have been immune, this sense of fear has been developed through evolution

In addition, where the men were concerned, there would have been less pressure on them to avoid these smaller threats. One because the women were the primary carers for the children, and two because of the risks that they took every day when hunting for larger prey.

Statistics suggest that around six percent of the human population are afraid of snakes and that four percent have a phobia about spiders (arachnophobia). Researchers believe that based on those included in these figures that women are four times more likely to have a fear of phobia than men.

The theory above looks viable to me, and a great deal of research has gone into the behavioral studies of what seems to be an inherent fear based on very real factors that we as human beings would have had to deal with through evolution.

Some however disagree. They are much happier believing that the behavior is simply copied and handed down through the generations and that young girls learn to be afraid by watching their mothers and sisters. Which is a theory that could be a more than reasonable explanation for the differences in behavior between men and women.

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Relaxation Techniques to Get Through a Panic Attack

Panic attack is a period when a person gets temporarily disabled with a sense of extreme fear and or psychological distress. Such attacks are often abrupt and the sunset is usually without any warning. This can be a result of any phobia and even the fear of future attack is another reason to trigger the attack. Women are more prone to such an attack which is normally twice as compared to men. It has been seen that such attacks can occur even with simple imaginations of some fear. People who have phobia of height, water or even traveling by air can also get such attacks.

Although it is simply a temporary feeling but panic attacks make situation worse for the sufferer as he / she feels embarrassed after the panic attack is over. Such attacks typically last for ten minutes to half an hour and the person feels entangled in a fight and flight response. Such a situation stimulates body to secret the adrenaline which reaches its peak in about three minutes; the result is choking, palpitation, chest pain, sweating, nausea, dizziness, trembling and tingling sensation.

Many people who suffer from panic attacks for the first time, think the death is imminent, such a situation makes situation even worse. People temporarily withdraw themselves from the surroundings and feel change in their attitude. They become even more irritable and do not listen to any body. It is the feeling which probably can not be described. Many people who have suffered from attacks feel it to be the frightening experience of their lives.

Many people who get repeated attacks suffer from panic disorder and even this can be associated with anxiety disorder.There are instances where a sign of panic disorder can lead to a attacks upon exposure to some triggers. Such people need help of an expert psychiatrist who puts such patients on anti anxiety therapy, with some anti depression medication. Some therapists also teach the patients, the technique of overcoming such attacks with simple practice. In such a situation the will power of the sufferer plays an important role. If the person has complete mind control, he / she can reduce the flow of adrenaline in the blood circulation.

Phobia is a strong and persistent fear about situations, objects, activities and or person. Some people also suffer through night terror, which is a part of sleep disturbances. Another typical term is psychological trauma which could have resulted in some childhood happenings. Fear is also one of the causes of panic attack which could have been a simple imagination of any risk or danger. In most of the cases it has been seen these attacks are triggered with imaginary thoughts, some bad dreams, but in some cases it can be real also. The reason could be any, an accident taking place in front of them or any other violent events.

People who suffer from such attacks should visit a therapist, who will help them to know the real cause of panic attacks. Regular counseling by a therapist can also prove to be of great help. But basically the sufferer has to believe in self help by gaining control on the mind and come out of this situation.

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Fear of Snakes Hypnosis

If you have a fear of snakes, you are not alone. Millions of people all over the world have the same fear. Seeing or even thinking about a snake may make you start to cry, shake, or have trouble breathing. You may physically need to run away. Your fear may even extend to pictures of snakes or seeing snakes on TV. If your fear is enough enough, you may be afraid to go outside!

If this sounds like you, eliminating your fear may be as simple as taking advantage of hypnosis.

Unlike other phobia treatments, hypnotherapy will not require you to physically get up close and personal with snakes. That can actually be too traumatic for someone with a serious fear. Instead, hypnosis will focus on changing the way that your brain perceives snakes. If you can teach your brain that snakes are not a major threat to you and that they do not require such an extreme reaction, you will be able to eliminate your fear.

Your fear isoted deep in your subconscious mind. In fact, your subconscious is responsible for most of the things that you do, feel, and say. In order to change your perception of snakes, you have to do it at the subconscious level.

During a fear of snakes hypnotherapy session, your consulting hypnotist may do one of several things:

Focus on a past event that has led to your fear

If, for example, a snake startled you when you went to play outside as a 5-year-old, it could explain your current fear. Hypnosis can tap into your subconscious and train it to understand that a scenario like that was not so bad – and that it certainly does not justify a serious phobia now. While in hypnosis, a consulting hypnotist can change the subconscious minds perception of an event from the past. Once that is accomplished, the fear will often times disappear.

Focus on the good that snakes can do

A hypnotherapy session may look at the positives – like the fact that snakes can kill rodents, insects, and other pests. The fear can be minimized by simply by learning about the good that snakes can do.

Focus on visualization

Your hypnosis session may include imagining yourself near snakes without being afraid. This can lead to being able to respond in the same way in real life. You may also be told to visualize good things – like hiking through the woods or taking your kids to the zoo – without being terrified that you'll run into a snake.

No matter what techniques your consulting hypnotist uses, overcoming your fear of snakes can be empowering. Once it's gone, you will not have to worry about what may be lurking on TV or what you may see at the park.

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