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Specific Disorders

A specific phobia is an unrealistic or extreme fear of a specific situation, object, or setting. Individuals with specific phobias often know there is no real reason to be afraid and that their behavior is not logical; however, they may feel powerless when faced with the fear. Many individuals with a specific phobia will change their lifestyles to avoid their fear as much as possible. For a diagnosis of specific phobia to be made, the symptoms must persist for at least six months and not be due to any other anxiety disorders such as: social anxiety, separation anxiety, agorophobia, or PTSD.


Specific Phobias has five broad categories:


Animals such as a fear of spiders, dogs, or bugs


The natural environment, such as heights or thunderstorms


Blood, injury, and injection, such as a fear of needles or medical procedures


Situational, such as a fear of flying or riding in elevators


Others, such as a fear of vomiting or choking


What are the symptoms for Specific Phobias?


Deep fear or anxiety about a specific object or situation, which may result in crying, stiffening, clinging to another person, or avoidance.


The object or situation always provokes almost immediate fear or anxiety.


The individual actively avoids the object or situation.


The phobia disrupts the person’s daily life.


In some cases, exposure to the feared object or situation (the phobic stimulus) can cause full or limited panic attacks.


In children, a specific phobia generally prompts crying, tantrums, freezing, or clinging.



Interventions can be a combination of several different complementary approaches that work together to reduce symptoms. For one client, it may include medication, nutritional changes, exercise, and/or mental health therapy. For another client, it may include taking supplements/vitamins, practicing mindfulness, or spending lots of time outdoors in nature. 


If you think you may suffer from any of the symptoms mentioned above, let’s work together to discuss your treatment options.