When someone experiences a phobia, they have intense fears that are usually considered irrational. These fears arise via typical stimuli that are statistically unlikely to cause harm. Most people may have heard of arachnophobia (fear of spiders) and social phobia; however, the subject of this article is less well known.
Phobophobia is the term for fear of phobias in general. It also describes the fear of sensations when experiencing anxiety due to a phobia. Having a fear of fear or an all-encompassing fear of ending up with a phobia may be debilitating. In essence, Phobophobia is the fear of allowing yourself to show that you’re scared.
How Does Phobophobia Work?
To clarify, when you have Phobophobia, you may be:
Phobophobia derives from “Phobos,” the Greek word for fear or flight. Therefore, when you put the two parts of the term together, they mean “fear of fear.” This can be a terrifying concept for many people.
When you have Phobophobia, you may find that your life is no longer anything like you wish it to be. The anxiety condition is sometimes linked to claustrophobia (fear of enclosed and small spaces), nosophobia (fear of becoming sick), and also agoraphobia (fear of open spaces or the fear of not being able to escape). This condition may be limiting as you may already have phobias and become frightened of potentially gaining more. This continuous fear can create a vicious cycle.
Conversely, you could have no phobias at all but might have found yourself changing your usual daily routine to avoid the possibility of ever getting one.
Fear Of Anxiety And Phobia Symptoms
Individuals living with Phobophobia may experience the latter of the two forms — fear of anxiety and phobia symptoms. This may be particularly true for people prone to severe anxiety or panic attacks. They may become scared of experiencing further anxiety attacks — those that are associated with upsetting physical symptoms.
You may find that your daily life becomes difficult to manage if you experience obsessive thoughts of potential horrible outcomes when you think or speak about your fear. You may begin to feel that you can’t move forward in life as your fear or anxiety prevents you from doing so. You may experience intense panic attacks that feel like a heart attack, or you may feel as though your life is in genuine danger.
It can often be difficult to identify what triggers these extreme reactions in phobia symptoms. Your symptoms may occur at any time of the day, for example. You may not even identify that you have a phobia until your daily life becomes disturbed by the symptoms. If you begin to see a pattern of your symptoms, it may be beneficial to get help as soon as you can to prevent the symptoms from worsening. With this in mind, let’s look at some of the treatments for the condition.
Treatments For Phobophobia
Phobophobia may cause you a great deal of harm and personal upset when left untreated.
Self-help / Self-care
There are various techniques you can employ to reduce the impact your phobia has on your life. You can try reducing your symptoms with self-help or self-care, including taking on a hobby that seems daunting. In addition to therapy or other treatment methods (outlined below), you could try some of the following self-care methods:
Besides self-help practices, other treatments, such as CO2 treatments, may reduce symptoms and treat Phobophobia.
Your doctor may prescribe you medication to help reduce symptoms of anxiety or phobias. However, these may only prove effective as a short-term solution. If you’re considering medication for anxiety or phobias, it’s important to consult a physician or mental health professional.
Hypnotherapy may be another treatment option to help with your phobia. Hypnotherapy may help by focusing on your subconscious mind. The goal of hypnotherapy is to reveal the source of your fear and then enable you to understand that your fears are irrational. Hypnotherapy is considered a safe treatment option.
Neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) is the study and practice of how you create and imagine your reality. NLP may influence the way your brain behaves using language and other methods of communication to reprogram the way your brain responds to subjects you may be fearful of. It may enable you to develop new, healthier behaviors.
Psychotherapy, often known as talk therapy, includes various techniques that aim to support an individual in identifying and changing difficult thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. Both behavior and Cognitive Behavioral Therapies (CBT) are types of psychotherapies that may be used to help you re-approach and treat your phobia. If you’re considering seeking therapy for your condition, it’s important to find an accredited, licensed, and qualified professional therapist. BetterHelp is the largest e-counseling platform globally and can match you with a licensed therapist that best suits your needs so you can overcome any mental health concerns you may be experiencing.
Phobophobia usually responds well to treatment. As the condition is often connected with other anxiety disorders, treating all your conditions simultaneously may be important. Your therapist may be able to help by diagnosing mental health concerns you may have and creating a customized treatment plan that meets your own unique needs. Fear of fear may be difficult to manage on your own, but you may be free to live life on your terms again with the right treatment. Don’t hesitate to reach out today for support.