Dealing with Fears and Phobias with Hypnotherapy
Almost all of us have an irrational fear of something. It may be of mice, insects, the dentist or needles. For most of us, such fears are minor and don’t hinder our day to day life.
Fear is a normal, adaptive and protective human reaction. When fearful, our mind and bodies become fully alert to prepare us for preventative or avoiding reactions to deal with the threat. However, when fears become so intense and acute as to cause severe anxiety and panic and interfere with daily living, for example, giving rise to avoidance behaviour, then they are phobias. A phobia can be seen (and experienced) as an acute fear of something which in reality constitutes little or no threat. Common examples of phobias are fear of enclosed spaces, flying, heights, snakes or insects.
The phobic reaction is entirely unconscious as we don’t actively decide to react with fear of panic. Knowing that your fear is unreasonable does not give you the ability to control your feelings. The mere thought of your phobia can make you feel anxious and being actually exposed to the phobic object or activity can be overwhelming.
Some of the physical symptons associated with phobias are headaches, dizziness, greatly increased heart rate, tightness on the chest, churning stomach and excessive sweat (it should be noted that such symptoms experienced in isolation may not necessarily be related to a phobia).
Some of the emotional symptoms are feelings of powerlessness, overwhelming panic or anxiety, fear of losing control and an inability to act or react. Phobias often have their roots in traumatic or negative childhood experiences but can develop later in life. Some phobias can be easily lived with, eg, a fear of snakes or clowns where the individual can avoid the phobic object or activity without any emotional, social or economic cost.
However, if your phobia is perhaps causing you distress, making you avoid certain social or work related situations and gives rise to disabling fear of panic, then perhaps you should seek help.
Hypnotherapy’s deeply relaxing nature and its ability to access the unconscious mind (where such fears reside) can assist you to understand your phobia and its roots to control and reverse the panic symptoms and eliminate the phobic reaction. The phobic reaction is the unconscious mind helping you by providing you with protection and hypnotherapy can help by offering the mind new and improved ways of helping you. The unconscious has a desire to provide you with protection and it is this desire which allows us to create long lasting improvements.