Phobias Specialist

It’s estimated that 10% of the population experiences at least one phobia. If excessive or irrational fears interfere with routine activities, you may benefit from professional help. At Deep Well Health Care LLC in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Rebecca Cherry, MD, MPH, uses hypnotherapy to help you resolve your phobias. To make an appointment, call the office today, or book online.

Phobias Q & A

What are phobias?

A phobia is an intense fear that affects your quality of life. If you have a phobia, you might experience extreme anxiety when you encounter whatever it is you’re afraid of.

Phobias vary in severity, from a minor annoyance in some people to a disabling condition in others. Usually, people who have phobias understand that the fear is irrational, but they’re unable to stop it.

What causes phobias?

Phobias occur for both genetic and environmental reasons. For example, you might develop a phobia following a life-threatening event like a car accident. You might also experience a phobia if anxiety disorders run in your family. 

Research suggests children who have parents with anxiety are more likely to develop phobias.

What are some common phobias?

Some common phobias include:

  • Agoraphobia: Fear of situations or places you can’t escape
  • Social phobia: Fear of social situations, like parties or conferences
  • Glossophobia: Fear of public speaking
  • Aviophobia: Fear of flying
  • Claustrophobia: Fear of small, tight, or enclosed spaces
  • Hemophobia: Fear of blood or other physical injuries
  • Ophidiophobia: Fear of snakes
  • Arachnophobia: Fear of spiders

Sometimes, a phobia can be difficult to recognize.  For instance, emetophobia, or fear of vomiting, can be misidentified as chronic nausea.

What are the symptoms of phobias?

Symptoms of phobias include:

  • Racing heartbeat
  • Dry mouth
  • Upset stomach
  • Nausea
  • Profuse sweating
  • A sense of impending doom

You might also experience lightheadedness, elevated blood pressure, or the inability to speak.

How are phobias diagnosed?

To diagnose phobias, Dr. Cherry reviews your medical history and conducts a clinical interview. During the interview, she asks about your symptoms, including their severity, when they occur, and if any activities like meditation or other stress management techniques provide relief. 

After she gathers the necessary information, Dr. Cherry develops a custom treatment plan.

How are phobias treated?

At Deep Well Health Care LLC, Dr. Cherry treats phobias using hypnotherapy. When your mind is in a focused hypnotic state, she will guide you to internal resources which you can use to decrease irrational fears. Usually, treatment of a phobia requires 1 or 2 sessions of hypnotherapy. 

If phobias are preventing you from living your best life, make an appointment at Deep Well Health Care LLC. Click the online booking tool today, or call the office.