Knowing their fear is irrational doesn’t make it any less scary for a person in the grip of a phobia. Be mindful of this whenever addressing somebody’s phobia, no matter how silly it may seem to you.
That being said, there are some fears that will hold you back from activities that are essential parts of a healthy life. In such cases, it’s important to acknowledge the problem and seek out support so you can tackle it head-on. Here are four common phobias to overcome in order to live your best life.
1. The Dentist
If you’re embarrassed to share your smile with the world because of misalignments, gaps or damaged teeth, but haven’t had a checkup in years, you are potentially dealing with a phobia of the dentist. If left unchecked, this could lead to serious issues down the line. The most reliable cosmetic dentistry procedure for correcting neglected teeth is porcelain veneers, typically a pain-free process that can be completed in just a few visits.
Make sure to visit an experienced dentist who has a relaxed, comfortable space. You can discuss your feelings with the receptionist and dentist in advance to ensure they are able to cater for your anxiety.
If the idea of taking an overseas trip makes you feel nauseous or uneasy because it involves a plane ride, then you are one of many who has a flight phobia. This is a common fear and is nothing to be embarrassed about. It’s also one that can definitely be overcome in time. This phobia generally stems from a negative experience with flying in the past, or from feeling a lack of control over your circumstances in the air.
What you can do is research the industry and read advice from pilots to understand that flying is actually the safest mass transportation method you can take. You may also want to consider working with a psychologist to address your feelings of helplessness and anxiety. You can even reward yourself with a trip at the end of your research and therapy!
If you find yourself avoiding certain rooms of your house because of the odd chance an eight-legged critter may be present, you may have arachnophobia: fear of spiders. There are various reasons people fear spiders. It could be due to a past experience like a spider bite, a cultural background that shuns the creatures, or it could even be a reaction you picked up in your childhood that you can’t remember.
The reality is, in most cases, arachnids are not a significant threat to us. The more you are exposed to information, and spiders themselves, the better your chances are of banishing your fear for good.
4. Crowded Spaces
Feeling nervous or panicked when you’re in spaces like elevators, cinemas, public transport, or even waiting in crowded lines can be symptoms of agoraphobia: the fear of any place that might make you feel trapped. The anxiety stems from a fear of being stuck and incapable of escape but it will usually intensify after a person experiences a panic attack a few times, and then fears it will happen again when they are next in a similar situation.
If this fear is stopping you from socializing and keeping you from completing tasks or attending important events, therapy can be extremely helpful.
If you or someone close to you experiences any of the above four phobias, remember they don’t have to be permanent. With the right support, you will be able to combat any of these and reclaim your life.