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Latest Newsletter available for November - Don't forget to check your emails regularly for the latest information. - Attendance News: A week plagued with Chicken Pox and other illnesses this week. Congratulations to Jays Class who managed to achieve 94.4% and are our weekly attendance winners. Hopefully next week we will all be well and can have a great week and improve on the school weekly attendance of 85.04%

Specific Phobias

What is it?

 

Specific phobias are an overwhelming and unreasonable fear of objects or situations that pose little real danger but provoke anxiety and avoidance. Unlike the brief anxiety you may feel when giving a speech or taking a test, specific phobias are long lasting, cause intense physical and psychological reactions, and can affect your ability to function normally at school or in social settings.

Specific phobias are among the most common anxiety disorders, and not all phobias need treatment.

 

 

What causes specific phobias in a child?

 

Much is still unknown about the actual cause of specific phobias. Causes may include:

  • Negative experiences. Many phobias develop as a result of having a negative experience or panic attack related to a specific object or situation.
  • Genetics and environment. There may be a link between your own specific phobia and the phobia or anxiety of your parents — this could be due to genetics or learned behavior.
  • Brain function. Changes in brain functioning also may play a role in developing specific phobias.

These factors may increase your risk of specific phobias:

  • Your age. Specific phobias can first appear in childhood, usually by age 10, but can occur later in life.
  • Your relatives. 
  • Your temperament. 
  • A negative experience. 
  • Learning about negative experiences. 

 

What are the symptoms of specific phobias in a child?

 

 

A specific phobia involves an intense, persistent fear of a specific object or situation that's out of proportion to the actual risk. There are many types of phobias, and it's not unusual to experience a specific phobia about more than one object or situation. Specific phobias can also occur along with other types of anxiety disorders.

Common categories of specific phobias are a fear of:

  • Situations, such as airplanes, enclosed spaces or going to school
  • Nature, such as thunderstorms or heights
  • Animals or insects, such as dogs or spiders
  • Blood, injection or injury, such as needles, accidents or medical procedures
  • Others, such as choking, vomiting, loud noises or clowns

Each specific phobia is referred to by its own term. Examples of more common terms include acrophobia for the fear of heights and claustrophobia for the fear of confined spaces.

No matter what specific phobia you have, it's likely to produce these types of reactions:

  • An immediate feeling of intense fear, anxiety and panic when exposed to or even thinking about the source of your fear
  • Awareness that your fears are unreasonable or exaggerated but feeling powerless to control them
  • Worsening anxiety as the situation or object gets closer to you in time or physical proximity
  • Doing everything possible to avoid the object or situation or enduring it with intense anxiety or fear
  • Difficulty functioning normally because of your fear
  • Physical reactions and sensations, including sweating, rapid heartbeat, tight chest or difficulty breathing
  • Feeling nauseated, dizzy or fainting around blood or injuries
  • In children, possibly tantrums, clinging, crying, or refusing to leave a parent's side or approach their fear

 

 

Key points about specific phobias in children

 

  • Specific Phobias are a type of mental health problem, specifically linked to anxiety. A specific phobia can show in children, usually around 10 years old.

  • The cause of specific phobias can be biological, medical, genetical or environmental.

  • Symptoms seem irrational and an annoyance but must be addressed early, especially in childhood.

  • A psychological evaluation is needed to determine the cause and specific phobia.

  • Treatment includes therapy and medicines.

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