Phobias of all types exist for individuals. By definition, phobias are illogical fears and anxieties of things that are not truly a threat. They are a result of an emotional reaction tied to an objective event with the object in question that distorted the experience of it. Many develop phobias over adolescent or childhood events tied to unpleasant experiences. Other phobias can be tied to trauma.
Hypnotherapy can help an individual remember the essence of the episode and find inner peace with it through cognitive reframing, coping strategies and ways to find calm when confronted with the same phobia in later days. Overcoming phobias can take time but the level of arousal in correlation to the presence of it can be greatly reduced through hypnosis. If one is willing they can gradually desensitize to the phobia and learn how to co-exist without increasing anxiety
Please also review AIHCP’s Clinical Hypnotherapy Certification and see if it meets your academic and professional goals. Those qualified and trained in hypnotherapy can help individuals deal with and cope with phobias. The program is online and independent study and grants the professional a certification in Clinical Hypnotherapy upon completion of the core courses.
Phobias are irrational fears of things, places, or situations that pose no true threat. Millions of individuals suffer from a broad range of phobias from fears of heights, spiders or snakes or dogs, flying in an airplane or driving a car, the dark, bodies of water, the sight of blood or needles or even public places. Phobias fall into the category of anxiety disorders. Phobias and panic attack and the symptoms associated with them are all interrelated types of irrational fears that result in a fear and stress response within the body. Phobias are classified by the DSM-5 as specific, anxiety disorders or agoraphobia, the fear of public places and people. While anxiety is concerned with future impeding stressors, phobias while irrational exist in the moment when put into contact within the stressor, object or situation.
Many individuals will be triggered by a phobia and panic, cry, flee, overreact, or avoid situations associated with them. Individuals may feel threatened or in danger or disconnected from reality. This can cause physical symptoms of nausea, sweating, trembling, loss of breath, or increased heart rate. When life styles are altered or severe restrictions to life occur, then a phobia is no longer mild and needs counseling and treatment.
Causes of Phobias
Phobias have numerous origins within the person. Some are genetic while others are environmental and learned behaviors. Many phobias generate from classical conditioning at a younger age via a traumatic event. Within classic conditioning there is a conditioned stimulus and a unconditioned stimulus which results in a conditioned response. The conditioned stimulus is associated with the unconditioned stimulus and hence is tied with the unpleasant event. An example would include someone who was in a high place (CS) and experience an event where they fell or almost fell (UCS). The conditioned response resulted in a fear of falling associated with the high place. Hence a fear of high places becomes associated with the fall. This can be applied to any type of phobia.
In addition, an individual at a young age may experience an event of another person and emulate that same experience. Vicarious conditioning occurs when the person witnesses a traumatic event and inherits the same fear. Hence, if a child witnessed his/her mother scream and run from a spider or a snake, this imprinted fear carries on in life with the child. Also, some may read or study a particular thing or event and inherit a fear of it although never associated with it at a personal level.
In regards to general anxiety and agoraphobia, the fear of public places, there is also studies that support genetic predisposition.
The Brain and Phobias
The Limbic system processes emotion. The amygdala processes danger and fear and can invoke a response. In addition, the hypothalamus plays a key role in activating the pituitary gland in activating the fight or flight response. Hence when emotionally charged situations emerge, as well as threats, the body prepares a response. True fears and threat invoke the sympathetic system to produce cortisol and other hormones to raise blood pressure, tighten muscles and prepare the body to defend itself. Phobias create the same tension and anxiety within the person but minus a true threat but only perceived threat. The hippocampus which is essential in forming memories, receives impulses from the amygdala and hence imprints within the memory an event associated with distress. These events are also stored in various areas associated with the cortex of the brain and interestingly enough, certain areas of disgust or fear within facial expressions correspond with those areas in the cortex.
Phobias, unless severely anxiety driven, are usually treated with exposure therapy. This involves gradual exposure to the phobia in a safe and calm environment. Hence if one fears spiders, the exposure will begin with simple thoughts, then led to pictures and possibly later interaction with a real spider. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) can also be utilized to rationally discuss the phobia and reframe the illogical fear of it. It will review the past trauma and logically try to understand the rational behind the fear. Part of healing is understanding that the fear alerted within the brain is for something that is not a true threat. Retraining the brain to respond in a normal fashion is the key within this therapy. Learning to calm oneself is also key in overcoming phobias. Hence meditation can help reduce the arousal within a given moment.
EFT or the Emotional Freedom Technique is also a way to help reduce the impact of phobias. EFT looks to remove negative energy associated with trauma or thoughts and help the body remove that negative energy through a series of tapping. The tapping looks to retrain the emotional arousal associated with the thought, object or animal. The key is to reduce arousal correlated with the thought so that the thought or trauma becomes less intrusive to the individual when he/she comes upon it.
Hypnotherapy and Phobias
One of the least physically evasive and alternative ways to deal with phobias is through hypnosis. Clinical Hypnotherapy can help find the root of the issue in a relaxing setting and under a slight subconscious relaxed state deal with the phobia and trauma. It can help identify the root cause, the tension felt, and help learn to reframe it and lower arousal when in various situations. Clinical Hypnotherapists can teach patients how to calm oneself when in the presence of a phobia and learn how to positively reframe it. When flying, one can utilize self hypnosis and meditation to help alleviate the arousal state as well. Self hypnosis can be utilized whenever enters into a stressful situation. Special mantras and other ways to alleviate the arousal of the event can also be utilized
Phobias are irrational but real enough within the mind to cause anxiety and fight or flight responses. Through identification of the root cause, cognitive behavioral therapies, gradual exposures and alternative methods, one can alleviate the intensity of them. This is especially true for severe and crippling cases. If one can even reduce severity to a point of functionality, this can be beneficial in reaction to situations. Easier said then done but sometimes necessary for certain extremes and types of phobias.
Please also review AIHCP’s EFT Program as well as AIHCP’s Clinical Hypnotherapy Program. Both programs are online and independent study and open to qualified professionals who are looking to utilize EFT or hypnosis in their practice. While these two models of care do not require licensure, many licensed counselors still like to utilize them. These types of certifications can enhance a professional practice and resume.
Clinical Hypnotherapy is an excellent, alternative and non-evasive way to handle phobias and fears. It looks to help soothe the mind and find the root of the problem at the unconscious level. It incorporates reframing and new ways of thinking, hoping to alleviate the tension and fear that arises when exposed to the stressor. The fear of flying is no exception. Thousands of individuals have an intense fear of flying and will avoid this use of safe and convenient travel due to this paralyzing fear. Clinical Hypnotherapy can help reduce the fear at its core and help individuals learn to manage flights and eventually be able to find some peace if they need to fly to a destination.
The article, “Can Hypnotherapy Fix A Fear Of Flying? I Found Out” by Alicia Lansom reviews her fears of flying and how Hypnosis and Clinical Hypnotherapy helped alleviate her fear and allowed her to be able to cope with some of the issues associated with flying. She states,
Lydia Johnson, clinical hypnotherapist and founder of the London Clinic of Hypnotherapy, says the process can be very effective in helping people combat issues with planes. “If you want to overcome a fear of flying, you may try everything consciously to do it, but you will still sustain the overwhelming fear, as long as your subconscious mind retains this terror,” she tells Refinery29. “Hypnotherapy can change and update your irrational deep-seated fears so it feels comfortable, even enjoyable, so there’s no white knuckling needed again.”
“Can Hypnotherapy Fix A Fear Of Flying? I Found Out”. Lansom. A. (2023). Refinery29.
Have you ever experienced a paralyzing fear at the mere thought of boarding an airplane? If so, you may be suffering from aerophobia, commonly known as the fear of flying. Aerophobia affects millions of individuals worldwide and can have a significant impact on their personal and professional lives. In this article, we will explore the causes of aerophobia, traditional methods of treatment, and delve into the effectiveness of hypnotherapy in overcoming this fear. Through the power of hypnotherapy, you can conquer your fear of flying and embark on new adventures with confidence.
Understanding the Root Causes of Aerophobia
Aerophobia is a complex fear that can stem from various factors. For some individuals, it may be triggered by a traumatic experience related to flying, such as a turbulent flight or witnessing an aviation accident. Others may develop aerophobia due to underlying anxiety or control issues. Understanding the root causes of aerophobia is crucial in effectively addressing and overcoming this fear.
Traditional Methods of Treating Aerophobia
Over the years, various traditional methods have been used to treat aerophobia. These can include exposure therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), and medication. Exposure therapy involves gradually exposing individuals to flying-related situations, allowing them to confront their fears in a controlled environment. CBT focuses on identifying and challenging negative thought patterns associated with flying, replacing them with positive and realistic beliefs. While these methods can be effective for some individuals, they may not offer a permanent solution for everyone.
Introduction to Hypnotherapy and Its Effectiveness in Treating Phobias
Hypnotherapy is a powerful alternative treatment that has shown remarkable success in helping individuals overcome phobias, including aerophobia. By accessing the subconscious mind, hypnotherapy aims to reframe negative thought patterns and create new associations with flying. Unlike traditional therapy, hypnotherapy targets the root cause of the fear rather than solely addressing the symptoms. This holistic approach allows individuals to experience lasting change and regain control over their fear of flying.
How Hypnotherapy Works in Overcoming Aerophobia
During a hypnotherapy session for aerophobia, a certified hypnotherapist will guide you into a state of deep relaxation. In this relaxed state, your subconscious mind becomes more receptive to positive suggestions and imagery. The hypnotherapist will work with you to identify and address the underlying causes of your fear, helping you reframe your perception of flying. Through visualization and repetition, you will begin to associate flying with feelings of calmness and confidence. Over time, these new associations will replace the old, fear-based responses, empowering you to conquer your fear of flying.
Success Stories of Individuals Who Have Conquered Their Fear of Flying Through Hypnotherapy
Countless individuals have successfully overcome their fear of flying through hypnotherapy. One such success story is Sarah, who had been unable to board a plane for over a decade due to her severe aerophobia. After just a few hypnotherapy sessions, Sarah felt a newfound sense of calmness and control. She was able to board a plane without experiencing any panic or anxiety, and since then, she has traveled to numerous destinations around the world. Sarah’s story is just one example of how hypnotherapy can transform lives and open up a world of possibilities.
Finding a Qualified Hypnotherapist for Aerophobia Treatment
When seeking hypnotherapy for aerophobia, it is crucial to find a qualified and experienced hypnotherapist. Look for professionals who are certified and have specialized training in treating phobias. Ask for referrals from trusted sources or consult reputable hypnotherapy directories to ensure you find a hypnotherapist who can effectively guide you through your journey to overcome aerophobia.
Preparing for a Hypnotherapy Session to Overcome Aerophobia
Before attending a hypnotherapy session, it is essential to prepare yourself mentally and emotionally. Take some time to reflect on your fears and anxieties surrounding flying. Write them down and discuss them with your hypnotherapist during the session. It is also helpful to practice relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing exercises, in the days leading up to your session. By preparing yourself, you can make the most of your hypnotherapy experience and increase your chances of overcoming aerophobia.
Additional Techniques and Practices to Complement Hypnotherapy in Overcoming Aerophobia
While hypnotherapy is highly effective in treating aerophobia, there are additional techniques and practices that can complement this treatment. These can include mindfulness meditation, yoga, and positive affirmations. Engaging in these practices can help you further reduce anxiety, promote relaxation, and reinforce positive beliefs about flying. Discuss these complementary techniques with your hypnotherapist to create a comprehensive treatment plan tailored to your specific needs.
Conclusion: Empowering Yourself to Conquer Your Fear of Flying with Hypnotherapy
If you have been living with the fear of flying, know that there is hope for a brighter future. Hypnotherapy offers a powerful and transformative path to overcoming aerophobia. By addressing the root causes of your fear and creating new associations with flying, hypnotherapy empowers you to conquer your fear and embrace the joy of air travel. Take the first step towards a fearless future by finding a qualified hypnotherapist and embarking on your journey to overcome aerophobia. It’s time to spread your wings and soar to new heights.
Please also review AIHCP’s Clinical Hypnotherapy Certification and see if it meets your academic and professional goals. Qualified professionals can apply for the four year certification to help individuals face phobias through hypnosis. The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification.
“Aerophobia (Fear of Flying)”. (2022). Cleveland Clinic. Access here
“Tips for Overcoming Your Fear of Flying, Why It Happens, and More”. Pointer, K. (2017). Healthline. Access here
“What you can do to overcome a fear of flying, according to experts”. McInnis, K. (2023). CNN-Underscored. Access here
“Don’t Let Fear of Flying Hold You Back – Try Hypnotherapy”. Himani. MantraCare. Access here