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Self-help

A phobia is an extreme fear of something or a situation.

Common symptoms of a phobia are anxiety and panic when you come into contact with the cause of your phobia.

Treatments for phobias include talking therapies, such as cognitive behavioural therapy, and sometimes medicines.

Read more on the NHS website.

Common symptoms of a phobia are anxiety and panic when you come into contact with the cause of your phobia.

Phobia symptoms

A phobia is a type of anxiety disorder. You may not experience any symptoms until you come into contact with the source of your phobia.

But in some cases, even thinking about the source of a phobia can make a person feel anxious or panicky. This is known as anticipatory anxiety.

Symptoms may include:

If you do not come into contact with the source of your phobia very often, it may not affect your everyday life.

But if you have a complex phobia, such as agoraphobia, leading a normal life may be very difficult.

Read more on the NHS website.

Treatments for phobias include talking therapies, such as cognitive behavioural therapy, and sometimes medicines.

Medical treatments

Almost all phobias can be successfully treated and cured.

Simple phobias can be treated through gradual exposure to the object, animal, place or situation that causes fear and anxiety. This is known as desensitisation or self-exposure therapy.

You could try these methods with the help of a professional or as part of a self-help programme.

Treating complex phobias often takes longer and involves talking therapies, such as:

Medication is not usually used to treat phobias. But it's sometimes prescribed to help people cope with the effects of anxiety.

Medicines that may be used include:

Read more on the NHS website.