Halloween Fun or Spider Phobia Hell?
When the fear of spiders causes palpitations
With Halloween approaching tomorrow there are sure to be many creepy crawlies and fun costumes seen on people enjoying the spooky celebrations.
There are certain to be many and varied spiders among the costumes, this can be fun for the person dressing up, but an absolute nightmare for a person that has a fear of spiders.
Arachnophobia is one of the most common fears amongst people of all ages in the UK.
What are the symptoms?
Symptoms of Arachnophobia can include intense anxiety, avoidance of places known to have spiders and in severe cases a panic attack. If the fear of spiders is intense enough it becomes a spider phobia, if you are suffering from a spider phobia the panic attack can become so severe that it can cause some or all of the following physical symptoms.
- Hot flushes
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- A choking sensation
- A rapid heartbeat
- Pain or tightness in the chest
- A sensation of butterflies in the stomach
- Headaches and dizziness
- Feeling faint
- Numbness or pins and needles
- Dry mouth
- A need to go to the toilet
- Ringing in your ears
- Confusion or disorientation
Self Help Suggestions for phobia:
The good news is that there are many ways to available to help yourself to reduce your symptoms. Some self help techniques include.
Relaxation – for example 7-11 breathing and focused relaxation of individual muscles beginning at your feet and working up to your head.
Visualisation – using the relaxation and breathing techniques and mentally visualising how to successfully cope with a situation that triggers Anxiety, Fear or a Phobia response.
Self help groups – a place to meet other people with similar phobias to share ways of coping with similar phobias.
In some cases where self help is not enough on it’s own medical help can be valuable, there are some great tips on the https://www.nhs.uk website. There are also talking therapies and counsellors available. It is entirely possible that by working with self help techniques and or a professional person you can free yourself from your phobia.
Often people feel really alone with their fear or phobia and it is a shame because many people have them. In my therapy room I see lots of clients who feel isolated and in some cases embarrassed about the effect a spider can have on them. These people are ordinary men and women who get hijacked by our primal fear emotion. In my work as a therapist I see people regularly that would like to not feel that way anymore. I have techniques that can help you, if this is an area that would be of interest to you please feel free to call me or email me for a free chat about how I may be able to help you.