Phobias

Phobias

We all have fears that are natural and normal.

Usually we are able to deal with what is causing the fear and move on. However, when that fear becomes so overwhelming that it is impossible to function in a normal, everyday way that fear becomes a phobia.

A phobia is a debilitating fear of or anxiety about a specific object, situation, activity or feeling, even when there is no danger present. The fear becomes an overriding factor of every single decision that is made and can significantly affect your daily life.

If this fear or anxiety is not addressed the fear starts to control you, rather than you controlling the fear. Phobias are usually divided into two categories, simple or specific. They can mask underlying causes and can be a symptom of deeper emotional distress.

When facing a phobia, common symptoms include:

  • Nausea
  • Sweating
  • Dizziness
  • Increased heart rate
  • Trembling
  • Shortness of breath

If you you feel you may be suffering with a phobia, please contact your GP or speak to a trained counsellor or therapist.

More info

Useful Articles

Here's a list of articles on phobias you might find helpful.

Phobias and Irrational Fears
Symptoms, Treatment, and Self-Help for Overcoming Your Anxiety and Fear
 
Almost everyone has an irrational fear or two—of mice, for example, or your annual dental checkup. For most people, these fears are minor. But when fears become so severe that they cause tremendous anxiety and interfere with your normal life, they’re called phobias. The good news is that phobias can be managed and cured. Self-help strategies and therapy can help you overcome your fears and start living the life you want.

Phobias: Causes, Symptoms and Diagnosis 
Individuals with a phobia go to great lengths to avoid a perceived danger which is much greater in their minds than in real life. If confronted with the source of their phobia, the person will suffer enormous distress, which can interfere with their normal function; it can sometimes lead to total panic. For some people, even thinking about their phobia is immensely distressing.

Why Do We Develop Certain Irrational Phobias? 
Under normal circumstances, fear triggers a natural fight-or-flight response that allows animals to react quickly to threats in their environment. Irrational and excessive fear, however, is typically a maladaptive response. In humans, an unwarranted, persistent fear of a certain situation or object, known as specific phobia, can cause overwhelming distress and interfere with daily life. Specific phobia is among the more prevalent anxiety disorders, affecting an estimated 9 percent of Americans within their lifetime. Common subtypes include fear of small animals, insects, flying, enclosed spaces, blood and needles.

Phobias: The rationale behind irrational fears 
Phobias are very common, with many people admitting to being irrationally afraid of something. But where does this fear come from, and what can we do about it?

Why do people get phobias? 
An estimated 13% of the adult population will develop a phobia at some point in their life, according to one study. But why do people develop phobias?

Fear Not! For millions of sufferers of phobias, science is offering new treatments - and new hope 
Researchers are making enormous progress in determining what phobias are, what kinds of neurochemical storms they trigger in the brain and for what evolutionary purpose the potential for such psychic squalls was encoded into us in the first place. With this understanding has come a magic bag of treatments: exposure therapy that can stomp out a lifetime phobia in a single six-hour session; virtual-reality programs that can safely simulate the thing the phobic most fears, slowly stripping it of its power to terrorize; new medications that can snuff the brain's phobic spark before it can catch.

Poems and Quotes to Inspire You

Dare we hope? We dare.
Can we hope? We can.
Should we hope? We must, because to do otherwise is to waste the most precious of gifts given so freely by God to all of us.  So when we do die, it will be with hope and it will be easy and our hearts will not be broken.

Andy Ripley – England and Lions rugby legend, often described as one of the most colourful personalities in the history of English rugby

Charities and support groups

Charities and support groups

Below you will find a comprehensive list of charities and support groups that offer help and assistance to anyone who is struggling with this mental health issue

Childline

The UK’s free and confidential helpline is not just for children, it provides help for young people of all ages who are in distress or danger.  Counsellors provide advice and support, by phone and online, 24 hours a day. 

You can get help and advice about a wide range of issues, including violence and abuse in your relationship on the Childline website.  You can also talk to a counsellor online, send an email or post on the message boards.

Whatever your worry, it’s better out than in.

ChildLine has launched an app called Zipit. It helps you get flirty chat back on the right track. It's packed with killer comebacks and top tips to help you stay in control of your chat game. Find out more: childline.org.uk/zipit

Helpline: 0800 1111
www.childline.org.uk

Mind - For Better Mental Health

We provide advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem. We campaign to improve services, raise awareness and promote understanding.  We won't give up until everyone experiencing a mental health problem gets support and respect.

http://www.mind.org.uk

Mental Health Foundation

Provides information and support for anyone with mental health problems or learning disabilities.

http://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/

SANE

SANE services provide practical help, emotional support and specialist information to individuals affected by mental health problems, their family, friends and carers.

http://www.sane.org.uk/
Helpline 0845 767 8000

Salvation Army

The Salvation Army works closely with addiction referral services as well as providing specialist detox centres in the UK. This is complemented by rehabilitation and support programmes.

http://www.salvationarmy.org.uk/addiction-support

Get Connected

Get Connected is the UK's free, confidential helpline service for young people under 25 who need help, but don't know where to turn.

Helpline: 0808 808 4994
Open from 11am - 11pm every day
http://www.getconnected.org.uk/

Counselling Directory

Counselling Directory aims to be the leading service for providing counselling advice and information - connecting those in distress with the largest support network in the UK.

http://www.counselling-directory.org.uk/

The Site

TheSite.org is the first place young people should check for advice, information and support on sex, relationships, drugs, drink, health and wellbeing.

http://www.thesite.org/

Time to Change

Our aim is to start a conversation… or hopefully thousands of conversations.

We want to empower people with mental health problems to feel confident talking about the issue without facing discrimination. And we want the three quarters of the population who know someone with a mental health problem to talk about it too.

http://www.time-to-change.org.uk/

Rethink

Rethink, the leading national mental health membership charity, works to help everyone affected by severe mental illness recover a better quality of life.

http://www.rethink.org/
Helpline 0300 5000 927 Monday - Friday 10am - 2pm

Family Lives

Offers support to anyone parenting or helping to raise children, from newborn babies to young adults. There are free telephone and email helplines, parenting courses and information leaflets. The website offers lots of advice, real-life stories and relevant news as well as a helpful A-Z of related topics.

http://www.familylives.org.uk/
Helpline: 0800 800 2222 (9am – 9pm, Monday to Friday;10am – 3pm Saturday and Sunday)

 

Anxiety UK

Provides support if you have been diagnosed with an anxiety condition.

www.anxietyuk.org.uk
Helpline: 08444 775 774 (Monday – Friday 9.30am – 5.30pm)

Phobics Society

This website is made by a few individuals who felt that there was a need for better overall understanding of phobias and healthcare across the country.  We are in no way an official organisation but we simple want to share our thoughts, knowledge, experience and relevant news concerning phobias, diseases and healthcare in the United Kingdom.

http://www.phobics-society.org.uk/

OCD UK

Run by people with OCD for people with OCD. Includes facts, news and treatments.

Helpline: 0845 120 3778
www.ocduk.org

Beyond OCD

Beyond OCD,  the leading provider of consumer-friendly resources to help sufferers cope with and conquer Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), works to increase public and professional awareness of OCD, educate and support people with OCD and their families, and to encourage research into new treatments and a cure.

We are a small organization with a big heart. A resource for individuals, families, mental health professionals, educators, clergy and the media across the country, we are dedicated to improving the lives of people who suffer with OCD.

http://beyondocd.org/

No Panic

Aims are to aid the relief and rehabilitation of those people suffering from Panic Attacks, Phobias, Obsessive Compulsive Disorders, and other related Anxiety Disorders, including Tranquilliser and Drug Withdrawal, and to provide support to sufferers and their families and/or carers.

 

www.nopanic.org.uk
Helpline 0800 138 8889

Young Minds

Charity committed to improving the emotional wellbeing and mental health of children and young people.

www.youngminds.org.uk
Parents Helpline 0808 802 5544 Monday - Friday 9.30am - 4pm

Support Line

SupportLine provides a confidential telephone helpline offering emotional support to any individual on any issue. The Helpline is primarily a preventative service and aims to support people before they reach the point of crisis. It is particularly aimed at those who are socially isolated, vulnerable, at risk groups and victims of any form of abuse. SupportLine is a member of the Helplines Association. SupportLine also provides support by email and post.

http://www.supportline.org.uk
Helpline: 01708 765 200

Student Minds

Student Minds is the UK's student mental health charity. We believe that peer support can change the state of student mental health. Our vision is for students to take action to foster an environment where everyone has the confidence to talk and listen to each other, the skills to support one another and the knowledge to look after their own mental health.

Helpline: 08444 775 774 Mon-Fri 9:30am - 5.30pm (calls subject to charge)
http://www.studentminds.org.uk/anxiety-disorders.html

Samaritans

The Samaritans provide 24 hour, confidential, emotional support for anyone in crisis.

http://www.samaritans.org/
Helpline 116 123, this number is FREE to call
Email jo@samaritans.org

Elefriends (run by Mind)

Elefriends is a supportive online community where you can be yourself. 

We all know what it's like to struggle sometimes, and this is a safe place to listen, share and be heard. Whether you're feeling good right now, or really low, it's a safe place to share experiences and listen to others. 

Shared experiences and perspectives are valuable and powerful. In this way Elefriends don't just get help, they give help too. In the good times and the bad.

www.elefriends.org.uk

Off The Record

We believe that young people need places to go which are easy to access, where you are treated with respect, and where you can get support and information to help you make your own life choices. Our services are friendly and welcoming – about 1,000 new young people visit us every year. Available in the Richmond borough.

http://otrtwickenham.com/

Papyrus UK

Suicide prevention for young people up to the age of 35

https://www.papyrus-uk.org/
Helpline: 0800 068 41 41
Monday - Friday 10am – 5pm & 7pm – 10pm, Weekends 2pm – 5pm 

Text: 07786 209697
Email: pat@papyrus-uk.org

 

Barnardos

Barnardo’s believes in children regardless of their circumstances, gender, race, disability or behaviour. Our purpose as a charity today is to transform the lives of the UK’s most vulnerable children. We believe in the abused, the most vulnerable, the forgotten and the neglected. We will support them, stand up for them and bring out the best in each and every child.

www.barnardos.org.uk

Have I got a Problem?

HaveiGotAproblem.com is a free online resource to help you understand issues or concerns you may have about mental health or addiction issues.

This site was created to give the public information to help them understand mental health and addiction issues and to assist people in making better informed decisions about their life and personal choices.

 

http://www.haveigotaproblem.com/

 

Triumph Over Phobias

TOP UK runs a network of self-help therapy groups for sufferers of phobias, OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) and other related anxiety disorders. Our groups are open to anyone, aged 18 or above. You do not need to have seen a doctor or have a formal diagnosis to attend one of our groups.

All our self-help therapy groups meet once a week and are run by trained volunteers, many of whom have overcome a phobia or OCD themselves. Our groups use a type of behaviour therapy which is based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) principles and the work of Professor IM Marks. In many cases there is a long waiting list for therapy on the NHS but you should be able to access a TOP group immediately. (Bath, Bristol, London – Kentish Town, London – Westminster University, Torquay, Richmond)

 

Telephone: 01225 422705
http://www.topuk.org/

Together UK

Since Together was formed in 1879, we have believed that people with mental health issues have the right and the abilities to lead independent, fulfilling lives as part of their communities.

The people who use our services are at the heart of everything we do. They influence and shape the support they receive from us, and the way our services are run.

http://www.together-uk.org/

Phobics Awareness

Our website, forum, and chat room are all completely free! We are a community composed of people from all over the world who are suffering from panic, phobias and anxiety. We believe in support through the exchange of ideas, information and coping skills.

The website was designed to be a source of personal support for anyone affected by: Panic attacks, Panic Disorder, Agoraphobia, Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Anxiety, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Social Phobia, and other Anxiety Disorders and conditions

http://www.phobics-awareness.org/

OCD Action

Support for people with OCD. Includes information on treatment and online resources.

Helpline: 0845 390 6232 (Monday – Friday, 9:30am – 5pm)
www.ocdaction.org.uk

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