I know you are sick of it
Why a separate page for Emetophobia?
I have deliberately not included Emetophobia (vomit phobia) in the ‘standard’ fears and phobias page on this website because Emetophobia warrants its own separate page.
Quite simply, in my opinion, Emetophobia, just does not respond to most conventional phobia treatments. The reason for this is that the term ‘phobia’ can be very misleading. Whilst it is called a ‘phobia’, it is, more often than not, a complex combination of anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, panic attacks, phobia, sometimes depression and even traces of an eating disorder. Because of this, an entirely different approach is required when treating this truly awful condition, which in my opinion, is probably the worst ‘phobia’ that you can have.
Suffering in silence
Emetophobia is a condition that is not widely recognised, even though it is a very widespread anxiety based disorder with approximately 3 million UK sufferers (with 90% of those being female). Many people suffer in silence and may be afraid to tell anyone as they feel they are odd or weird and that nobody would believe or understand them, including their doctor. They think they are the only person on this planet with this extreme fear, which totally dominates every waking hour of their life.
Living in constant fear
Fear of being sick and of others being sick is a debilitating condition, life can be dominated by irrational and obsessive thoughts and actions. Sufferers may go to extreme lengths to avoid the intense anxiety brought about by the condition and are likely to avoid many foods, obsess about sell-by-dates of food, be highly vigilant about the colour, or smell of food, avoid eating out, steering clear of anywhere germs or illness may be present (schools, doctors’ surgeries, hospitals etc.), obsessing about a family member/work colleague who has ‘had a bug’, avoid door handles, touching money, frequent washing of hands. Sufferers may even avoid pregnancy due to a fear of morning sickness or the baby being sick. During the winter months, the anxiety ramps up even more as the season when viruses and bugs are likely to be more prevalent is upon us. And any news in the media about the Norovirus, Flu epidemics or other outbreaks can cause a total overload in the levels of anxiety and panic.
An integrative approach is needed
Because of the complex combination of anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, panic attacks, phobia, sometimes depression and even traces of eating disorder, an integrative therapeutic approach is required.
Over the years, using an integrative mix of Hypnotherapy, CBT and Psychotherapy, I have successfully helped many sufferers alleviate symptoms, make significant improvements or, in some cases to completely overcome Emetophobia.
Please be assured that I do NOT use exposure therapy – you will never be exposed to pictures, or videos of people vomiting.
I am a full-time hypnotherapist, psychotherapist and counsellor who has been providing hypnotherapy, hypnosis, CBT and counselling in Horsham and Crawley for over a decade