Every year when ‘I’m a Celebrity…’ begins, more and more people start to talk about what they fear the most. Seeing the likes of Coronation Street’s Helen Flanagan panic after being trapped in total darkness with an ostrich may not be at the top of everyone’s ‘must view’ list, but it does get people talking about their own fears and phobias, which can only be a good thing.
Many are familular with the term ‘phobia’ but some may not understand when something that we are merely afraid of turns into a full fledged phobia. The definition of a phobia is an irrational fear of an object/situation that would not normally trouble most people.
Any phobia may produce a state of panic when the sufferer is confronted with the phobic object/situation. A wide variety of physical symptoms are experienced such as nausea, increased heartbeat and jelly legs. For this reason, many people with simple or specific phobias enter into a pattern of avoidance which can vary enormously in severity from someone who would not want to touch a spider, to someone who cannot even look at a picture of a spider in magazines, and therefore has to vet everything they come into contact with. The latter demonstrates just how debilitating even a simple phobia can be.
The first step of facing up to a phobia is often understanding what troubles you in greater detail. Anxiety UK has a wide range of resources that can help you understand your phobia better, including fact-sheets and booklets.
And if you feel like you need greater support in coming to terms with a phobia that is impacting on your life, becoming a member of Anxiety UK provides you access to information, understanding and reduced cost therapy.
For the next few weeks, many will enjoy watching celebrities squirm as they face some of their greatest fears. But whilst watching, imagine how you would feel if asked to face your own.