Dealing with Phobia

Fear is a universal and old instinct. It can be defined as a feeling that you are in danger and that something very bad is about to happen, and is often accompanied by physical symptoms. When fear is disproportionate to the threat posed by a situation, irrational and followed by avoidance of situations, it is called a phobia.

Almost everyone has one or two irrational fears. Some are afraid of mice, others of spiders, and yet others terrified of heights. For most people, these fears are minor. But for others, they are so strong that they cause tremendous anxiety and interfere with their day-to-day life.
When fears are irrational and uncontrollable, they are called phobias. If you live in fear due to a phobia, there is still hope, and you can overcome your phobias with the right treatment and some self-help strategies. Don't wait to seek help.
In addition to seeking professional help, there are some strategies that may help overcome phobias. Learning about these is the first step towards overcoming them. It is important to recognise that phobias are common, and easily treated by psychotherapy.
There are three basic types of phobia:
- Agoraphobia: A widespread fear of places or situations. This includes a fear of being outside the house alone, of being in a crowd, getting stuck in a queue or of travelling alone
- Social phobia: This occurs when someone has a marked and persistent fear of appearing in front of others or meeting people, often for fear that they will misunderstand their anxiety. This can be specific to a situation or widespread.
- Specific phobias: A sharp and persistent fear (or simple anticipation) of things like flying, sight of blood, injections and heights. These make people steer clear of many situations and stay indoors.
To understand what is happening, think of yourself in a pleasant situation at some point. If you are in good company and there is good music playing in the background, you remember the situation every time you hear that song.
If you stop to think about it, the music does not only remind you of the situation, but you may even experience the same pleasant feelings that you felt at that time.
It is the same for the brain. We experience strong emotions at times, which are linked to whatever happens around us. Phobias usually occur when panic is triggered in situations that are potentially dangerous.
For example, no one likes being cornered or being near a person or an animal that poses a risk. Being stuck in traffic, an elevator or a mall is, for those who suffer from certain types of phobia, a situation of being cornered. For this reason, many people who are prone to panic end up developing a phobia of closed places.
When it comes to panic attacks, professional treatment and therapy can make a big difference. But learning more about panic also helps sufferers. The mere knowledge of pathology will relieve symptoms.
Reading about anxiety, panic disorders and similar conditions will help you understand that your sensations and feelings are nothing unusual, and you are not going crazy. Learn to control your breathing. A deep breath helps relieve symptoms of a panic attack and calms down an anxious person.
Practice relaxation techniques. When practiced regularly, activities such as yoga, meditation, and stretching and relaxation of muscles will help reduce the symptoms significantly.


  1. I don't know, but I loose confidence when I am in public. I feel everyone is staring at me!
    Is it Social Anxiety Disorder?

    1. We all have fears; what is import is to understand if this discomfort that you feel interferes in your everyday life, or if it becomes intolerable, when that happen we are probably facing a phobia, but don’t forget with the right help it can be overcome.

  2. Great blog >> so Dr. Laura if i need to consult you in mental illness matters, how can i reach you ?? do you have a twitter account :)or do you do you personal treatments here in Oman??

    thaks Dr

  3. Dear Musab

    You can contact Muscat Private Hospital, I'm doing my appointments there.
    Best Regards