Overcoming Agoraphobia and Extreme Anxiety Disorders
Agoraphobia is fear of being in a public place. The agora in ancient Greece was the marketplace. Xenophobia is an irrational fear of strangers, taken from the Greek root xen o, which means strange or foreign. Acrophobia, a fear of heights, is taken from the root acro-, meaning terminal, highest, or topmost. In most medical terms, this root is used to mean extremity, as in acrocyanosis. Hydrophobia is a
Panic attacks are very common and more common in young people in both men and women. People feel that they are extremely ill, feel their heart beating fast and forcefully in their chest, notice a change in their breathing pattern, and may breathe very fast and deep (hyperventilation). Sweating, having a headache or intense fear, not wanting to leave the house (agoraphobia), wanting to run away into the open air, not being able to tolerate being in a room (claustrophobia), are other features of panic attacks. Some people may hyperventilate and lose consciousness.
The anxiety disorders include panic disorder with or without agoraphobia, agoraphobia without panic disorder, specific phobia, social phobia, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, acute stress disorder, generalized anxiety disorders and anxiety disorders due to a medical condition.
Phobias restricted to highly specific situations such as proximity to particular animals, heights, thunder, darkness, flying, closed spaces, urinating or defecating in public toilets, eating certain foods, dentistry, or the sight of blood or injury. Though the triggering situation is discrete, contact with it can evoke panic as in agoraphobia or social phobia.
Hypnosis is particularly suited to use as an adjunct in treatment of anxiety disorders 95 of practitioners of hypnosis use it to assist in the treatment of anxiety. Hypnosis can be a powerful adjunct to desensitization and to coping rehearsal, since it attributes realism to imagined events. Arousal reduction and relaxation may be enhanced using hypnotic procedures. Self-hypnosis techniques or hypnotic interventions have proved useful in simple phobias, for panic patients and in the treatment of agoraphobia. As Frankel and Orne (1976) have noted, phobic patients tend to be more hypnotizable than other patients or the general population. Apart from general anxiety reduction, hypnotic techniques may be applied to re-establish a sense of self-worth and self-esteem.