Arachnaphobia Essay

1693 words - 7 pages

Ah Sunday morning your only day off. As your eyes flutter open and focus on your alarm clock a smile crosses your face and you hit the snooze button. Just as you begin to drift back into lala land, you sit straight up in your bed and you feel the cold sweat drip down your back and a shiver runs down your spine. As if it can smell your fear, the small black dot on the ceiling begins its terrifying decent, your about to scream, your mind is working a mile a minute, your heart is beating, you breath is short, you are frozen. The intruder in your room is now hovering inches from your nose. Although the spider is only about the size of a pea it is the most terrifying experience of your life."19 ...view middle of the document...

When your impressionable mind sees a spider causing someone else considerable distress, or causes you distress you mind makes an association between that animal and the emotion that is felt. (Lekka pg.52) From that point on any time the stimulus is encountered (even if the spider is just crawling harmlessly on your wall) your mind will produce the same emotion that it produced when the stimulus was first encountered. "According to scientists, there are a number of reasons which may have led to this irrational obsession, although they have not yet been clarified. 1) Will give you a better outlook on the situation. (A.II, p.3) Moreover hypnosis is also a method that is becoming more and more popular today. Therapy is also an option; two very prevalent forms of therapies that are used to combat phobia are Cognitive therapy and Behavioral therapy.The treatment that I feel would be extremely effective for the treatment of specific phobias would be behavioral therapy. When something triggers the fear response in your brain your first inclination is to turn that response off. Scientists and psychologists feel that there is a better way to deal with the fear. Behavioral therapy is the idea of conditioning the brain to not view the object of your fear as something to be afraid of. "When the brain sets anxiety alarms ringing, our first inclination is to find the off switch. Behavioral scientists take the opposite approach. They want you to get accustomed to the noise so that you don't hear it anymore." (Gorman, pg. 52). In other words they want to make the fear causing stimulus a normal thing to the victim. This is accomplished by first exposing the patient to a very small portion of that which they are afraid of and then gradually build upon that portion until the individual is conditioned to respond to the stimulus without fear. For example someone suffering form arachnophobia might be shown a picture of a spider. Patients may have had an unfortunate incident as a child, i.e. they were bitten by a spider. 2) They may have seen someone close to them being bitten by a spider. 3) Repeated parental warnings "Don't go near spiders; they're poisonous," may have conditioned a child to faulty thinking/" (Lekka, pg.1)There are many treatments that exist for treating specific phobias; unfortunately the majority or individuals suffering from phobias choose to live their lives without receiving treatment. "Perhaps this is because these people choose not to acknowledge their fear because they don't want to be viewed as weak or psychologically unfit, or perhaps they don't believe that they are suffering from an illness." (CTRN p. 6) "Moreover they may not realize that the sooner they get help the sooner they can finally feel comfortable in their own skin again."(CTRN p. 6) There also exists the possibility threat, that they are not aware of the fact that there ailment can be treated. This disease can be treated using many methods. Drugs such as anti-depressants or...

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