Recognizing and Dealing With Agoraphobia

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Agoraphobia, according to WebMD, is someone who is actually in fear of three basic things. Fear of leaving home, of being alone and of being in a situation where they cannot suddenly leave or receive help. The fear seems very real and builds in severity until sometimes the person becomes housebound. There are ways to overcome this disorder before it gets severe. Here are some tips to help.

1- See a mental health professional to get diagnosed. Sometimes this can be the hardest step because it involves leaving your “safe” zone and entering out into the world. The only way to beat this is to identify the problem in order to start fixing it.

2- A psychiatrist can prescribe anti-anxiety medication that you take while you are being treated. You do not need to stay on this medication forever, it is only meant to help you to face your disorder and work through it.

3- Cognitive behavior therapy teaches a patient how to deal with their fears and guides you through the steps that will eventually help you to overcome agoraphobia.

4- The combination of anti-anxiety medication and cognitive behavioral therapy can free a person of their fears. Cognitive behavior therapy relies on teaching you ways to reduce your stress, deal with feelings of panic and helps you take steps to face your fears.

5- It is a scary process for someone with agoraphobia to face the idea of leaving their home and being in situations that normally give them panic attacks. Unless you face your fears, they will control you. When someone’s fears run their life to the point where they alter their lifestyle because of the fear, they need help.

6- If you know someone like this, be patient but firm and help them to get the professional help that they need. If you are suffering from agoraphobia, you can overcome it. It will not be easy but it can be done. You take baby steps and congratulate yourself on your small successes and do not be so hard on yourself when you slip and lose control. Keep consistent with your therapy and your agoraphobia will be a thing of the past.

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