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Arachnophobia

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If you jump, squeal and run a mile at the sight of a spider and even the hint of a darkened corner gets your spidey senses tingling, then don’t worry – you are not alone.
Fear of spiders – or arachnophobia – is one of the most common of all the phobias. Spiders make many people feel anxious and it can be very difficult to eradicate this fear from your subconscious.
However there are things you can to do to help you cope with your anxiety.

Face your fear

Unfortunately, the first step to overcoming your fear is to face it head on – not what you want to hear but a tried and tested method nevertheless.
If you see a spider lurking in a corner somewhere, try to fight your immediate urge to scream for help and run for your life and take a minute to just really look at it from a distance. Take a few steps towards it if you can.

Get educated

  • Tell yourself that spiders are a necessary and natural part of this world. They are everywhere and they are unavoidable.
  • Learn about spiders. Look up which spiders are native to your part of the world. There are very few spiders that are actually deadly and fortunately they are not native to the UK.
  • Realise that spiders are more helpful than harmful and have a great role to play in protecting humans by eating pests that may spread disease. For spiders, biting someone would be a last defensive resort.

Try to recognise your irrational fear

AracnophobiaWhen you jump a foot into the air and scream around wildly at the sight of a small spider in the corner of the room, try to recognise your behaviour as a slight over-reaction. When was the last time a spider came at you in a threatening way?

Overcoming your fear

Get someone you trust to help you to start overcoming your fear. You could get them to sit with you while you look at a picture of a spider. Try to increase the time you spend looking at the picture over a number of days until you feel able to touch it comfortably and confidently.

Then next time you see one of our eight-legged friends, just keep staring at it until you feel less frightened. Then try taking a few steps towards it and if you’re feeling really brave, try to chase it out of the window, or put a glass over it and take it outside.
The chances are that if you can do this just once, it will help you feel less afraid in the future. And remember, they are more frightened of you than you are of them.

 

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