If fear of spiders or other eight-legged critters has taken control over your life, Dr. Taji Huang in Glendale, CA, can help. Arachnophobia, the fear of spiders, is one of the most common phobias, and it is highly treatable with the help of an anxiety therapist.
Isn’t It Normal To Fear Spiders?
The fear of spiders is extremely common, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of. This primal fear has a strong biological basis and can even be seen in non-human primates. In fact, it would be abnormal to look at a black widow or brown recluse and feel no fear or anxiety. However, if your fear is so severe that it interferes with your daily life, then you may have a condition known as arachnophobia.
If your fear of spiders has become debilitating, then you might experience some of the following symptoms whenever you see, hear about, or even think about spiders:
- Rapid Heart Rate
- Pins & Needles
- Feeling Like You’re Choking
- Feeling Like You’re Dying
How Is Arachnophobia Treated?
Like any phobia, the fear of spiders can be effectively treated with exposure therapy. Depending on the severity of your anxiety, your therapist might have you start by simply thinking about spiders, looking at pictures of spiders, or holding a toy spider. Eventually, you might even be able to try more intense exposures, like observing real-life spiders or holding a live tarantula.
If this type of treatment sounds too extreme, remember that it’s okay to start small and gradually increase the intensity of the exposures over time. You can also try cognitive-behavioral therapy and other anxiety management strategies if exposure therapy isn’t for you.
Less Common Forms Of Arachnophobia
It is worth noting that some people have an intense fear of ticks, mites, or other arachnids. Symptoms of these forms may include:
- Avoid Going Outdoors
- Constantly Check Their Bodies For Ticks
- Frequently Worry About Lyme Disease and similar conditions,
- Avoid Spending Time With Pets
These symptoms might cross into the territory of health-related anxiety and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), but they can also be treated with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and exposure therapy. CBT is one type of psychological treatment that has shown to be effective in treating a variety of disorders, including anxiety disorders.
Glendale Therapist For Arachnophobia
If you’re compulsively checking for spiders, ticks, or mites all throughout the day—or if thoughts and images of spiders give you panic attacks—it might be time to consider scheduling a therapy appointment. Dr. Taji Huang is a licensed clinical psychologist with extensive experience treating specific phobias and other types of anxiety. Contact her office today to learn more about how she can help.