Phobia Treatment Myths Revealed
Phobia Can Be Helped By Exposure
Phobia can be helped by exposure – a myth or a reality? It is debatable whether Cognitive Behavior Therapy can successfully help in eliminating phobic conditions.
Exposure therapy or Cognitive Behavior Therapy – both refer to the same concept – helping the person get rid of phobia by gradually exposing him to the feared object.
In trying to establish or investigate the relevance of the concept that phobia can be helped by exposure therapy, it is essential for you to know what Cognitive Behavior Therapy is all about. CBT is all about modification of everyday thoughts and behaviors with the basic aim of influencing your emotions positively.
The steps of CBT
Cognitive Behavior Therapy occurs in stages, the victim is slowly and steadily introduced to the feared object and this makes him attach positive feelings to his thoughts and emotions. For instance, a person who is afraid of spiders is first shown some pictures of the insect.
The phobic individual looks closely at the pictures and develops a feeling that what is there to be so much afraid of spiders. Then he is made to hold some imitation models of the insect.
After the successful completion of these steps, the victim is shown a real spider and his expressions are marked. The result can be both positive and negative depending on the tenacity and will power of the phobic individual.
Cognitive Behavior Therapy rightly answers the question whether phobia can be helped by exposure therapy or not.
It is not a myth as long as it proves to be effective. CBT also involves relaxation and distraction techniques and it is a sort of counseling that helps bring about positive changes in the life and thought of the phobic individual.
However, Cognitive Behavior Therapy proves to be more effective when it combines well with other drugs and medications.
Phobia can be helped by exposure therapy is not always the case - it has several disadvantages. At times, exposure therapy takes long time to make the phobic individual react positively and that too may not be a permanent reaction.
Moreover, a frequent exposure of the phobic individual to the feared object or situation can make situation more critical and unbearable. The process involves a great deal of mental pain.
The patient can become hysteric and experience frequent panic attacks. Moreover, CBT requires frequent therapy sessions over several months.
Phobia can be helped by Cognitive Behavior Therapy is not a myth nor is it a reality always. The success of the procedure greatly depends upon the power of acceptance and endurance of the phobic individual.
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Posted by Jan Heering
Phobia Treatment Expert and author
Founder and President of the Morpheus Institute and
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