Phobias are the most common type of anxiety disorder and, according to the NHS, it is estimated that around 10 million people in the UK have a phobia which can affect anyone, regardless of age, sex and social background. Phobias can often develop when someone has experienced a period of heightened anxiety, as the brain may attribute a certain stimulus as being responsible for the anxiety.
Agoraphobia is one of the top 10 phobias suffered by millions in the UK. Many people assume agoraphobia is simply a fear of open spaces, but it’s actually a more complex condition. The NHS describes it as “a fear of being in situations where escape might be difficult or that help wouldn’t be available if things go wrong”. This often begins when someone experiences heightened levels of anxiety and has a panic attack. This leads them to feeling more anxious undertaking everyday tasks and activities. People living with agoraphobia will avoid situations that cause anxiety and may only leave the house with a friend or partner. They’ll order groceries online rather than going to the supermarket. This change in behaviour is known as avoidance.
If you’re noticing that you’re starting to feel anxious or panicked at the thought of tasks that were routine before, help is at hand. One of the best predictors of successfully overcoming mental health related conditions is to act early. Talking to your GP can help start the process, or you can pursue other proven methods including hypnotherapy.
Anxiety UK notes that people are sometimes reluctant to see their doctor about a phobia, because they’re embarrassed by it. The National Council for Hypnotherapy (NCH) agrees, writing that while people with phobias often know their response is irrational, this makes it harder for them to accept. People often only seek help when it prevents them doing something they want to do, or when they know a situation will force them to face it. You may have noticed the increase in your anxiety when the government announced their roadmap for easing lockdown. Instead of looking forward to opportunities to see loved one or socialise, the fear of being overwhelmed by anxiety is holding you back.
The National Council for Hypnotherapy (NCH) has many qualified and well-trained therapists across the UK who can help people overcome their fears and anxieties, allowing them to relax and enjoy life as restrictions ease. Hypnotherapy works differently to other talk therapies, and has a proven track record in helping people overcome anxiety, worry and panic.
Use the NCH therapist finder to search for a fully-trained and empathetic hypnotherapist near you, and start looking forward to the progressive easing of lockdown.