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Anxiety & Panic Disorders Health Center

Understanding Phobias -- Symptoms

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What Are the Symptoms of a Phobia?

At the heart of a phobia, there is anxiety. There are three main types of phobias:

  • Specific phobia, a persistent, irrational fear of particular objects or situations, such as snakes, spiders, heights, blood, flying, or elevators.
  • Social phobia, or social anxiety disorder, a persistent, irrational fear of situations where you may be scrutinized or criticized or embarrassed by other people.
  • Agoraphobia, a fear of leaving home, being alone, or being away from home in a situation where you feel trapped or helpless.

If you have a phobia that interferes with a normal social or working life, it's time to get treatment. The right kind of therapy can often lessen your anxiety and may diminish or even remove the phobia.

Recommended Related to Anxiety Panic

Understanding Generalized Anxiety Disorder -- Diagnosis and Treatment

The first step is to rule out the possibility that your symptoms are being caused by a medical condition that is not psychiatric. Among the conditions that produce symptoms similar to those of anxiety are hyperthyroidism or other endocrine problems, too much or too little calcium, low blood sugar, and certain heart problems. A thorough evaluation by your health care provider will determine if any of these conditions are the cause of your symptoms. If no other medical culprit can be found and the...

Read the Understanding Generalized Anxiety Disorder -- Diagnosis and Treatment article > >

 

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Joseph Goldberg, MD on April 12, 2014

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