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Phobias Versus Panic Disorders

What are phobias? How do they differ from panic disorder? What are the two leading suggested causes of phobias? Explain on the basis of what you learned from your readings and watching the videos.

What is similar between a person with a fear of heights (acrophobia) and a person with a fear of spiders (arachnophobia)?

Before behavior therapies, what type of therapy was used for the treatment of phobias? Why is it used?

Explain the similarities and differences of exposure therapy, virtual reality therapy and cognitive-behavior therapy as they are used in reducing fears.

Solution Preview

Phobias and panic disorders afflict millions of people all over the world. Some phobias and panic disorders are so debilitating they prevent those afflicted from living normal and healthy lives. But are panic disorders and phobias one and the same? If not, how are they different? What causes them, what treatments can be taken? Exactly what types of therapy can be applied? Are they, at all effective? This short narrative is going to attempt to provide answers to these questions.

On Phobias and Panic Disorders

Phobias are those fears of an event, an object or a situation that are not necessarily dangerous as the majority of the populace do not at all find them fearful or troublesome (BBC, 2012). Examples of phobias include acluophobia (fear of darkness), acrophobia (fear of heights), agoraphobia (fear of open spaces, fear of inability to escape), and arachnophobia (fear of spiders). Panic disorder, on the other hand, is the state of frequent instances of panic whereby sudden and unexpected onset of anxiety sends one to a state of fight or flight to find escape from the situation. When one has panic disorders, it's not really a case of having deep-seated fears. Those who have panic attacks might not have phobias, as panic attacks are sudden and unpredictable. Phobias are ever-present as the individual knows what he or she can tolerate and cannot absolutely do. So while those with phobias can avoid being exposed to what they fear most, ...

Solution Summary

The following posting compares phobias and panic disorders.