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Dr. Shashidhara M

DPM, MD - Psychiatry

Psychiatrist, Pondicherry

9 Years Experience  ·  200 at clinic  ·  ₹200 online
Dr. Shashidhara M DPM, MD - Psychiatry Psychiatrist, Pondicherry
9 Years Experience  ·  200 at clinic  ·  ₹200 online
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I'm a caring, skilled professional, dedicated to simplifying what is often a very complicated and confusing area of health care....more
I'm a caring, skilled professional, dedicated to simplifying what is often a very complicated and confusing area of health care.
More about Dr. Shashidhara M
Dr. Shashidhara M is one of the best Psychiatrists in Villianur, Pondicherry. Doctor has over 9 years of experience as a Psychiatrist. Doctor is a DPM, MD - Psychiatry . You can meet Dr. Shashidhara M personally at Sri Vijaya Medicla Annex in Villianur, Pondicherry. Save your time and book an appointment online with Dr. Shashidhara M on

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DPM - NIMHANS - 2008
MD - Psychiatry - NIMHANS - 2012


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I'm 20 years old male, but since some days I'm feeling breathlessness and anxiety. Some say it's because of stress may be. I would just like to confirm it once.

Ph. D - Psychology, Professional Certified Coach
Psychologist, Ahmedabad
I'm 20 years old male, but since some days I'm feeling breathlessness and anxiety. Some say it's because of stress ma...
Chronic stress is a by product of hour life style in today's modern times. Stress could have various effect on our body. It effects almost all of our system, anxiety is also one of it. I would like you to try following things on a regular basis. To begin with doing guided progressive muscular relaxation before sleeping will help you relax. You could download an audio file. I would also suggest you to take a multiple small break to take 3 nice and deep breath while keeping your eyes closed. You could do this while sitting or standing or while even walking or climbing stairs (keep your eyes open in that case). When you take a nice and deep break there is actual physiological change in your body. Thus will help you to activate parasympathetic nervous system which promotes relaxation and helps you calm down and think more clearly. This will also actually improve your performance in your work. Along with this exercise is one of the best way to relive stress and stay fit. Engage in any kind of physical activity at least 4 times a week. This also helps in stress reduction. Along with this some relaxation exercises as well as engaging in joyful activities such as music, singing, dancing, reading, being in nature, gardening, talking with friends or anything which you enjoy will help reducing stress and rejuvenation of your mind and body. Have good routine for sleep and eating. Lot of research has now proven that sugar is very harmful for our health. Reduce sugar and refined white floor in your diet as much as you could. Along with this also increase consumption of raw vegetables in the form of salad in both the meals of your day. Let me know how it works out for you. If you need help in exploring what works best for you and make this into your life style do let me know. As a trained wellness coach I could help you tailored your own holistic wellness program. Hope this helps wishing you very best.
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I just searched about the symptoms of depression. And every symptoms match with my symptoms. Therefore I know that I am suffering from depression. I am in class 12. I want to do best result. And want a bright career and thats why I have to study best. But I can not study. I feel dizzy irritating and hesitated most of the times. Nd my father can not understand that m suffering from any problem my mom also. They can not want to accept the fact that I am suffering from any problem. This problem start from when m in class 9.i had fight too much with my mom that time. Can not control my anger. Started crying most of the times, feels lonely, nobody is around without mom and dad. No amazing friend circle. If I start laughing once than I can not stop myself from laughing. thats why my friends all time tells me that I am mad, I have no work to do rather than laughing. What should I do please help.

Reparenting Technique, BA, BEd
Psychologist, Bangalore
I just searched about the symptoms of depression. And every symptoms match with my symptoms. Therefore I know that I ...
At your age this claim is serious. If you have depression then there are some major ramifications to take into account. I believe there may be some genetic predisposition or there has been some childhood issue, related to anger, that needs urgent attention. You must go and meet with a counselor immediately and if that person advises that you meet with a doctor you must do so and cooperate to your utmost. Please visit these professionals along with your parents. In the meantime please do the following sincerely because you could resolve the problem better with good cooperation: Have a good night’s sleep, have a good breakfast of more proteins, meditate often, remain free of stress, eat a lot of fiber, nuts, avocado, exercise regularly, eat dark chocolate, do Yoga meditation exercises, etc. I suggest you do the opposite of what this depression makes you feel like doing (actually, not doing): you will need to fight this condition. You must become active; stay upright during the daylight time; meet people; never sleep during the day, wake up by 6 am every day, play some active games, especially contact games, do physical exercises, talk to people and join some social clubs, attend Yoga classes etc. Watch sitcoms on TV or comedies and cheer yourself up. Go for excursions in groups, for outings, camps, conferences, and religious conventions. Get a pet dog and spend time training it, exercising it and relating to it. Expose yourself to some sunlight every day, at least, 30 minutes but not in the scorching heat. Whatever happens, please incorporate these three important adaptations in your life: always be responsible, be respectful, and be functional. If you did these three, lots of things will go well in life. Please pray and have faith in God to alleviate your sufferings. Don’t wait for others to help. Use your own motivation, which might be at its lowest, but persevere and win this battle. Above all to be really happy, you need to live in love and for love. Learn all about emotions and how to handle them and that will get you out of the depression rather easily and quickly. A counselor is there only to facilitate you, all the hard word must come from you, and your cooperation with that person is very critical for your success. Be positive every day and learn to be contented with what you have. Do some left brain exercises: it is the happy brain. Here are a few suggestions: shut your left nostril and breathe, move your eyes from right to left and vice versa for at least half a minute at a time, and do calisthenic exercises with some form of counting, regularly. Whatever happens please cooperate with the therapy and do not discontinue until the condition is completely resolved. As regards the concentration you are sure to have hormonal imbalances which may impact your memory because of the chemical but also the distractions that come with it; together with depression I can imagine your problems. But you may work on the following even if the hormones kick in: Daily exercise of at least half an hour is a must. Even if you go to a gym, ask for aerobic and/or callisthenic exercises with whatever else you are doing. A healthy body harbors a healthy mind. With regard to memory, it is very important that your brain and body is ideally rested to be able to recall whatever is required, rather comfortably. Puzzles pose problems to the brain that help it to use new pathways and neurons, which give the brain considerable exercise. It taxes the left brain to use logic to solve the myriad possibilities which other activities do not stimulate. Crosswords are excellent for vocabulary learning and use. Jigsaws and Rubik cube stimulate different permutations to finally settle on the most likely one. Picture completion and anagrams help approach problem solving from several angles. Do Sudoku, and memory co-relation activities and skills. Have a good night’s sleep, have a good breakfast of more proteins, meditate often, remain free of stress, eat a lot of fiber (whole grains, fruits and vegetables), nuts, avocado, eat dark chocolate, do Yoga meditation exercises, etc. You need to check out if you are stronger visual or auditory. The visual is a better mode than the auditory. However, if you combine the two modes, you will get the best concentration. Have a special place of learning, which should be well lit, with soft painted walls, well-ventilated, with no distractions. When you get bored, study by writing. If you repeat learning at least five to seven times, you will apparently remember for a longer time. Sit comfortably but do not slouch. The reading material should be of a fairly large print. Study at small intervals of about 40 minutes and then take a break or change the subject. Short-term memory is a faculty of the left brain, and long-term memory is a feature of the right brain. When people are stressed, they tend to favor the right brain and abandon the left brain, where short-term memory resides. So, it is really very simple: deal with the stress and activate left brain functions. Here are a few suggestions to activate left brain function: shut your left nostril and breathe, move your eyes from right to left and vice versa for at least half a minute at a time, and do callisthenic exercises with some form of counting, regularly. There are some memory enhancing techniques and study methods that your teacher will be able to guide you with. If your home life is full of distractions and stress, it is likely to affect your memory, adversely. In that case, I suggest that the family goes for counseling. The counselor can then explain the problem to your parents or you can get a close relative to explain to them too.
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How Lack Of Sex Can Affect Your Relationship

Graduate in Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery ( GAMS )
Sexologist, Delhi
How Lack Of Sex Can Affect Your Relationship

Modern lifestyle generally motivates you to be conscious of your health and external obstacles to attain a fit body. But like many other problems that are not quite evident, lack of sex in your relationship may look like a trivial matter in the beginning, but can become a bigger emotional and psychological problem for you and your partner. Here are several ways in which lack of sex can lead to trouble in your relationship, and in the long run affect your mental and psychological health.

  1. Resentment as a primary factor: It has been widely accepted that resentment towards your partner is one of the primary reasons for the lack of sex in your relationship. However, you cannot ignore the fact that in most cases, lack of sex, which is not due to resentment, leads to resentment and misunderstandings, making it a serious issue. This will indeed induce great stress in you, affecting the way you treat your partner even outside the bedroom.
  2. Harm caused by resultant depression: Lack of sex in a relationship often goes a long way in widening the emotional gap between you and your partner. It results into simmering resentment or quarrels. The feeling of rejection has been known to induce severe clinical depression, which can seriously affect the relationship.
  3. Stress which you can't cope with: Doctors all over the world agree that sex is a great stress buster. The release of chemicals like endorphin or oxytocin inside the body induces relief and a feel-good mood, which reduces anxiety of daily life goals. When you stop having sex, the stress increases, which at some point of time or the other will lead to misunderstandings and problems in the relationship and emotional strain.

Overall, lack of sex leads to insecurity in the relationship and builds up mistrust, which in turn affects your and your partner's personal health. So, sitting down and discussing how to address this issue might be a good idea if you notice the lack of passion in your relationship.

4055 people found this helpful

Sir I got angry on by small talks between me and my girlfriend (when she talks to her friend and going out with friends. I always think bad about her when she is going to their relatives home and neighbours home, but love her so much then why I have doubt on her and got angry every time. please sir tell me.

U have correct ur thoughts otherwise it will cause big problem in near future,,u need to think it rationally,,be logical,,try to have trust on ur partner,,no trust means there is no love,, remember it,,soo try to have faith on her
1 person found this helpful
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Hello I am 30 years old, from last 3-4 years I feel some sadness, worries and fear of losing my husband. I feel all anxiety attack symptoms, heart palpitation, always fell to cry, suicidal thoughts, guilt, hopelessness, inability to feel pleasure, loneliness, loss of interest, mood swings, panic attack, sadness, or emotional distress. My behavior like excessive crying, irritability, self-harm, or social isolation, running thoughts mostly negative So my physiatrist told that I am patient Major depressive disorder and anxiety and prescribed Stalopam 10 mg (half tablet for 2 days and after that 1 per day). He said I’ll be totally fine within 2 week. Will this medicine work and will I be fine for always.

Ph. D - Psychology, Professional Certified Coach
Psychologist, Ahmedabad
I am 30 years old, from last 3-4 years I feel some sadness, worries and fear of losing my husband. I feel all a...
Dear friend, this medicine will take about 2 weeks to help you with your symptoms. You will have to take medicine for a longer time. I would suggest to also work with a psychologist to address the issues behind your feelings. This will help you start discovering the triggers and also learn tools to tackle the same. Building resilience and learning to manage the stressors associated with the problem is the best way to deal the issue in a long term. These medicines are good but for a long term use have addictive effects, so dose will increase. These medicines also come with their own side effects. In a nut shell, start the medicine, this will help you with the symptoms in 2 weeks. Along with that start counselling to work on route problem. Feel free to contact me if you have any concerns for questions. Hope this helps, wishing you very best,
2 people found this helpful
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I feel so lonely when someone whom I like avoid me. Get anxious, depressed and sad. I feel too much attraction to him. Help me.

L L. B..,, M.Sc psychy,, N L P, P.G.D.G.C, M.S psychotherapy,, M.A child care, M A, clinical psy, M.A,social psychiatry,, M.Phil., psychology., Ph.D .,psychology
Psychologist, Vijayawada
I feel so lonely when someone whom I like avoid me. Get anxious, depressed and sad. I feel too much attraction to him...
no one is not permanent friend in this world. except our family members. you are selecting one person when he does not care to you. then you feel anxious. it is not good for your health. it is better to make all of them as a friendly manner. then there is no chance of anxiousness.friendliness improves personal stamina. dont think about one person. feel and make a very good friendly relation with others.dont sit in home. and dont think aloneness. develop busy career schedule. express your internal feelings and problems with your close friends and family members. friends are coming and going in our life. no one is not permanent. you have so much of age. some one comes to you he can understand your feelings properly. up to that wait. dont feel sadness. dont get irritated. dont be anxious. feel always comfortable. spend remaining with close friends and family members. do hard work on your studies. make a good preparation for studies. at this stage studies are important not one friend. so be hard work. be positive and be sociable. ok all the best.
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Hi my name is priti. My delivery date is 10th April 2016 post I have a c section post delivery my stomach is still quit big what should I do? I am tensed.

Gynaecologist, Bhavnagar
Hi my name is priti. My delivery date is 10th April 2016 post I have a c section post delivery my stomach is still qu...
Uterus gets involuted at about 1 and half month after delivery. Means uterus comes back to normal size after 11/2 month. So don't worry.
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From the last one year I am facing a situation, I can control my dreams. In my dreams I pinch myself and get to know its a dream. When I feel no pain I start enjoying dream. I do whatever I want to do, I fly in dreams, kill people, hav sex, use magical powers, buy things, visit places so, every night is a excitement for me and as a result I like dreams more than reality. But during day I am all right. I do my daily tasks job, study and family responsibilities. Why this? I am afraid some day I might become a psycho? please explain.

M.Phil clinical Psychology, MS Psychotherapy and Counseling, PGDGC, MSc Psychology
Psychologist, Chennai
From the last one year I am facing a situation, I can control my dreams. In my dreams I pinch myself and get to know ...
Dreams is one of the automatic defense mechanism that helps in ventilating our unfulfilled desires in our unconscious mind thereby acting as a stress buster. Do not worry about its effects till you feel that you have confusion between dreams and real life.
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I am 19yrs old, I got frustrated very easily even on silly things. Help me what I have to do to come over the problem.

Masters of Philosphy, Master of Science, Bachelor of Sciences
Psychologist, Kolkata
I am 19yrs old, I got frustrated very easily even on silly things. Help me what I have to do to come over the problem.
Hi dear, you are over perfectionist. Do mindfulness exercise, everyday will help you to increase your tolerance level.
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I am a 18 yr old boy. I always have a feeling that nobody cares for me and get neglected. I want to get rid of this feeling. But it suddenly comes to my brain. I think this is a diseases. I know I should nt feel lonely. But I totally get into a different world. Believe me. and I feel that there are diferent people with whom I can adjust with my awkward behaviour.

M.B.S.(HOMEO), MD - Homeopathy
Homeopath, Visakhapatnam
Know it's a self-fulfilling prophecy. We've talked about your thinking and now we're going to talk about its results: if you think negatively, your results will be negative, too. If you walk into a party thinking no one will like you and you won't have fun, you'll spend the entire party on the wall, making zero connections and not having fun. With positive thinking, positive things can happen. There's no other way around it. The opposite is true too! if you think things go well, they often do. Whether or not they're going better in your head or in reality is another question, but the reality in your head is the only one that matters. Try it out! take control of your negative thoughts. With all the talking we've done about negativity, you can probably recognize which ones are negative and which ones aren't. But if you can't, take any thought you have about yourself or other people. If it's a fact, reword it. If it's assuming anything, reword it. And if it's discouraging, reword it. So" no one at work understands me" becomes" I haven't made a connection at work with anyone. Yet" you'll have to be mindful and aware, but it's doable. Easier said than done. Totally. It's one of the toughest habits to break. Knowing that, start in small chunks. Just ten minutes a day where if a negative thought comes up, you stop it in its tracks. Then work your way up until you spend all day monitoring yourself and taking control. Your entire demeanor can and will change. Consider your personality. Loneliness for an extrovert and loneliness for an introvert are two very different things. Explain your loneliness to someone different from you and they may not even be able to fake that they understand. So consider your personality -- what would content you? an introvert may just want one or two people to form a genuine relationship with and they may not need that much attention from them. They may be looking for a personal sense of fulfillment and not need that from anyone else. An extrovert may need to be around a team of people to feel like their social meter is getting adequately filled. The right people, of course! where do you fall on the spectrum? avoid negative situations. It's a bad idea to drink heavily, do drugs, or spend your life in front of the television. It's a doubly bad idea to do so if you're in a bad mood or feeling particularly lonely. So avoid situations that just exacerbate the problem. You may feel better temporarily, but you'll feel worse over the long-run.
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I am not able to last long during intercourse with my partner. I ejaculate within 2 minutes of intercourse. We have tried start and stop method as well, but the results are still the same. My partner is left unsatisfied because of this problem of mine. I am a smoker as well, I smoke 8 to 9 sticks per day. I need a solution to this problem.

BAMS, MD Ayurveda
Sexologist, Lonavala
I am not able to last long during intercourse with my partner. I ejaculate within 2 minutes of intercourse. We have t...
You can go for following remedy it will help you natural home remedy using asparagus powder and milk: 1. Take 2 tsp indian asparagus powder 2. Add 1 cup milk 3. Boil the mixture for 10 min 4. Drink 2 times every day this will help with your concern, if it dosent work then you must consult ayurvedic doctor.
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How Should A Working Mom Manage Stress?

Master Of Science In Counseling & Psychotherapy
Psychologist, Bangalore
How Should A Working Mom Manage Stress?

Stress is a very common factor for all working moms. Work, home and taking care of the child all together causes great amount of stress in working mothers. Exercising makes the body release endorphins, which are stress fighting hormones and help in relieving stress. There are various types of exercises which a working woman can do.

  1. High energy activities: High energy aerobic exercises lead to an increased heart rate, which results in production of more endorphins that make the body fight stress naturally. They include running, skipping, dancing, etc. These also improve physical and mental health.
  2. Yoga: Yoga is excellent for stress relief. It involves movement and stationary poses or postures, along with breathing exercises. Yoga enhances the body's natural response to relaxation, making your life healthier.
  3. Tai Chi: Tai chi involves a series of flowing movements of the body along with breathing. Having its roots in martial arts, Tai Chi provides efficient stress relief.
  4. Pilates: This exercise involves a series of movements and exercises performed on a mat. Pilates enhance strength, flexibility, endurance and immunity of the body.
  5. Martial arts: Martial arts is an effective way of unleashing energy and venting out frustration, which result in reducing stress. There are different forms of martial arts to choose from, which include Judo, karate, Taekwondo and several others.
  6. Kick boxing: Kick boxing reduces stress to a great extent and involves punching and kicking, which is performed with discipline. Kickboxing incorporates a rigorous workout schedule and is a great way to vent out frustration and energy, releasing stress.
  7. Team sports: Team sports are an ideal way to relieve stress, work out and have fun, altogether. Playing tennis, cricket or football offers a double amount of stress relief. Playing with your family will encourage bonding, fun and help in relieving stress together.
  8. On the go exercises: Several exercises such as running or jogging and cycling allow you to have a break, breathe some fresh country air and get your mind freshened up. Along with the release of energy, travelling across beautiful places helps in stress relief.
  9. Meditation: Meditation is an amazing mind exercise for stress relief. It requires great concentration and must be performed in a quiet atmosphere. Peace of mind is obtained.
  10. Gym activities: A gym has a lot of exercising instruments and devices. They involve power and strength and energy is unleashed. This is an ideal vent for anger and frustration, which results in great stress relief.

Working moms face a lot of stress, which arise from various aspects of life, including work, home and children. Stress busting exercises should be practised to maintain a perfect mental health. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a doctor and ask a free question.

2589 people found this helpful

Epilepsy in Pregnancy and Child Birth

FRHS, Ph.D Neuro , MPT - Neurology Physiotherapy, D.Sp.Med, DPHM (Health Management ), BPTh/BPT
Physiotherapist, Chennai

Many epileptic women have a normal pregnancy and give birth to normal offspring but there is a high risk of development of complications.vaginal delivery is recommended.

The frequency of seizures does not change pregnancy child delivery or puerperium.

2 people found this helpful

I am in depression because of I am not doing hard work to achieve my goal what will I do.

MD - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Chennai
I am in depression because of I am not doing hard work to achieve my goal what will I do.
The word depressed is a common everyday word. People might say" i'm depressed" when in fact they mean" i'm fed up because i've had a row, or failed an exam, or lost my job" etc. These ups and downs of life are common and normal. Most people recover quite quickly. With true depression, you have a low mood and other symptoms each day for at least two weeks The common symptoms are (few might be present in a person with depression) Feelings of sadness, tearfulness, emptiness or hopelessness Angry outbursts, irritability or frustration, even over small matters Loss of interest or pleasure in most or all normal activities, such as sex, hobbies or sports Sleep disturbances, including insomnia or sleeping too much Tiredness and lack of energy, so even small tasks take extra effort Changes in appetite — often reduced appetite and weight loss, but increased cravings for food and weight gain in some people Anxiety, agitation or restlessness Slowed thinking, speaking or body movements Feelings of worthlessness or guilt, fixating on past failures or blaming yourself for things that aren't your responsibility Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions and remembering things Frequent or recurrent thoughts of death, suicidal thoughts, suicide attempts or suicide Unexplained physical problems, such as back pain or headaches General medical conditions and substances causing depression also needs to be ruled out. Consult a psychiatrist and get evaluated.
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I mostly do masturbation 2 times a week but after that next I am getting tired, uneasy, fuzzy vision, my body was panning whole day what should I do please suggest me.

MD - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Chennai
I mostly do masturbation 2 times a week but after that next I am getting tired, uneasy, fuzzy vision, my body was pan...
Masturbation is a healthy form of sexual outlet, do not feel guilty about it. Most of the liquid contains only water and some fructose and hormones. Hence it does not drain your energy, rather it s your mind. Consult a psychiatrist, if you have excessive masturbation guilt.
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My father is nicotine addicted consuming lot of biri in a day, he is suffering nerves blockage also, and want to quit smoking, is there any best way to quit the smoking. He is asking alternate way for nicotine, we tried chew-able nicotine also but no luck. Please provide suggestion.

C.S.C, D.C.H, M.B.B.S
General Physician,
Best age to stop smoking is before 40 ,In fact do not start all Only by using strong will power and avoiding all situations where you feel like smoking, chewing tobacco/ or drugs or drinking or using drugs/ weed, avoiding friends who smoke and diverting mind by reading or chewing a gum, like NICORETTE and taking a walk when you crave for a smoke can all help. You can chew Nicorette gum which is nicotine replacement. There are medicines available. Which can be prescribed if asked personally.
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I fear dogs a lot. The very sight of it makes me afraid. I am walking and the dog is sitting on the edge those are quite anxious moments. What should I do? Dogs habit of smelling feels me that I should run (which I always do and luckily I escapes. Please help.

Masters in Clinical Psychology & Certified Cognitive Behaviour Therapy Practioner, Certified Neuro linguistic programming Practioner, Masters in Clinical Psychology, Post Graduate Diploma in Child and ADolescent Counselling
Psychologist, Pune
I fear dogs a lot. The very sight of it makes me afraid. I am walking and the dog is sitting on the edge those are qu...
Determining the Extent of Your Fear Analyze your symptoms. Specific phobias, including cynophobia (the fear of dogs), may include some of the following symptoms. Do you need to be in the presence of a dog, or can a photo or story of a dog trigger your symptoms? And, is it the dog itself that causes the fear, or something the dog is doing? For example, some people are fearful of barking, but are okay if a dog is silent. •Feeling an imminent sense of danger. •Feeling the need to escape or flee. •Heart racing, sweating, trembling or shaking, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, dizziness, or chills. •Feeling like what is happening is unreal. •Feeling like you’re losing control or going crazy. •Feeling like you might die. Determine if you change your life because of your fear. Unfortunately fears can be so severe that we feel the best way to make them go away is to avoid them completely. While a fear of flying, for example, may be quite easy to avoid by simply never flying, dogs are another story. Ask yourself if you do the following things in order to avoid being around dogs. If you do, there’s a good chance you have cynophobia. •Do you avoid hanging out with specific people because they have a dog? •Do you change your route specifically to avoid a house or neighborhood that has a dog? •Do you avoid speaking to certain people because they talk about their dogs? Understand there is a way to overcome this fear. While it is possible to overcome your fear of dogs, keep in mind that you need to be patient. It won’t go away immediately, it will take work on your part. You may want to consider seeking professional help from a therapist who can walk you through the process of overcoming your fear. Consider writing about your fear in a journal. Write down specific past memories that you have about dogs, and how you felt during those experiences. Learn relaxation and meditation techniques to help keep your calm and help control your anxiety. Break your fear into smaller sections to overcome; don’t think you need to tackle the whole thing all in one go. Have faith in yourself that you will get over your fear of dogs. And accept any mistakes you make along the way. Conducting Cognitive Restructuring Understand what cognitive restructuring is. Many phobias, including cynophobia, are based on how your brain comprehends a specific situation, rather than the actual situation itself. For example, you’re not likely afraid of the actual dog in front of you, but rather, you’re brain is interpreting the dog as being a threat which is then causing you to be fearful. Cognitive restructuring helps you to identify these thoughts, understand that they are irrational, and slowly help you to rethink (or reframe) your thoughts about a specific situation (i.e. Dogs). It is important to go into cognitive restructuring with an open and willing mind. You need to accept the fact that your fear is probably not based on rational thought, and as such, means that you can train yourself to think differently. If you go into this type of treatment pessimistically or with the belief that you’re being completely reasonable in your fears, you will make the process much harder to overcome. Think about events that trigger your fearful thoughts. The first step to overcoming your fear is to identify what is causing the fear in the first place. This may include thinking and talking about your past experiences with dogs, and trying to figure out what may have started the phobia in the first place. It may also include narrowing down the exact trigger that causes your fear. Is it dogs in general that cause you to be fearful, or do you become fearful when a dog does something specific (i.e. Growls, barks, jumps up, runs, etc.). Analyze your existing beliefs about your trigger events. Once you have a solid understanding of the specific events that trigger your phobia, you need to evaluate what you are thinking when this fear occurs. What are you telling yourself? How are you interpreting the trigger event in your thoughts? What are your specific beliefs about that event the moment it is happening? Continue writing your memories and thoughts in your journal. At this point start recording the reasons why you think the events triggered your fear. Write down as many of your beliefs as you can remember. Analyze your beliefs and thoughts to determine if they include any of the following: •All or Nothing — do you view ALL dogs as bad, no matter what? Or do you categorize dogs differently depending on some type of feature? E.g. ”I can’t be friends with anyone who has a dog.” •Should, Must, Ought — do you see a dog and automatically assume you have to be afraid of it? Do you feel like you have no other choice in the matter? E.g. ”My mom said I should never trust a dog.” •Overgeneralizing — have you tried to overcome your fear before and weren’t able to, and now you assume you’ll never be able to overcome your fear of dogs? E.g. ”I tried to be near dogs before and it didn’t work. I have no choice but to be afraid of dogs.” •Mental Filter — do you automatically draw conclusions about dogs based only on one or two previous experiences with dogs? E.g. “That dog attacked me when I was 3, all dogs are bad and will attack people if they get the chance.” •Discounting the Positive — do you ignore something good that happened because you can’t believe it’ll happen again? E.g. ”Sure, I was able to sit beside that one dog, but he was old and sick and didn’t look like he could walk, let alone attack me.” •Jumping to Conclusions — do you see or hear a dog and automatically draw a conclusion about what’s going to happen? E.g. ”That’s a pit bull, they’re awful and nasty dogs that can’t be trained properly.” Look at the feelings and behaviours that result from your beliefs. At this point you should have a better understanding of what triggers your fear of dogs, and the thoughts and beliefs you have about dogs when that trigger happens. Now it’s time to analyze how these thoughts and beliefs actually make your feel and behave. In other words, what are the consequences of your fear? What is the fear ‘making’ you do? Continue writing in your journal. At this stage you’ll want to include your reactions (both internally and externally) to the events that triggered your fear, and the beliefs that contributed to that fear. Examples of reactions might be: •You were walking down your street and encountered a dog in the yard of a specific home. Afterwards you never walked down that street again. •Your neighbour has a dog that they let into the backyard to play, so you never go in your own backyard in case your neighbour’s dog is outside. •You refuse to go to a friend’s house because they got a dog, and you can’t hang out with them if they bring the dog along. Investigate if evidence exists to back-up your beliefs. You should now be at the point where you’ve analyzed what triggers your fear, why your fear is triggered, and how you react to that fear. Now it’s time to analyze if there’s any actual proof to back-up the reasons why you’re fearful of dogs. Think of this part of the process as you needing to be able to prove to your therapist (or yourself) that your fears are perfectly rational. Use your journal to write down each of your beliefs and the associated evidence you have as to why that belief is reasonable and rational. If you’re a really logical person, can you find any scientific proof to back up your beliefs? For example, you have the belief that all dogs are going to attack you no matter what. Why do you think this is true? Have you been attacked by every single dog you’ve ever encountered? Does everyone else get attacked by every dog they encounter? Why would people own dogs as pets if they were constantly attacked? Develop a rational explanation for the trigger event. At this point you have tried to prove your fear of dogs is perfectly reasonable and found that you can’t find any evidence to back-up your beliefs. In fact, you’ve probably found evidence of the complete opposite. You now need to think about the beliefs that are causing your fear and work with your therapist to develop rational explanations for your beliefs. These rational explanations will start to make sense, and make you realize that your resulting fear doesn’t make sense. While this may sound easy, this is going to be the hardest step in your process to overcome your fear of dogs. Our beliefs can be entrenched in our minds so deeply that it can take some time (and convincing) that they make no sense. After all, your irrational beliefs may have helped you avoid bad situations, so what’s wrong with them? For example, you have a belief that all dogs attack. You weren’t able to find any evidence to back up that belief, so why do you have it? Maybe your belief is based on the fact that you saw a movie when you were 7 (that you shouldn’t have watched) that had dogs attacking and killing people. After you watched that movie you started to fear dogs based on the assumption that the movie was 100% accurate. In reality, it was just a movie, and there was no truth to it. And if you think about it, you’ve never actually seen a dog attack anyone. Move to the next step in your recovery. While you’ve come a long way at this point, you’re not finished. Even if you’re able to convince yourself that your fears have no rational explanation and there’s no good reason to feel the way you do, you’re not actually “cured. In a way you’ve completed the theoretical aspect of your therapy, now you have to complete the practical aspect of your therapy. At this stage you need to practice being around dogs. First, you need to learn how to relax when your fear or anxiety occurs so you don’t set yourself back. Second, you need to gradually expose yourself to dogs (in different ways) until you can feel relaxed when they’re around. Learning Relaxation Techniques Understand the different types of relaxation techniques. There are quite a few different types of relaxation techniques that you can learn to help with your fear and anxiety. They include, but are not limited to, the following: autogenic relaxation; progressive muscle relaxation; visualization; deep breathing; hypnosis; massage; meditation; tai chi; yoga; biofeedback; and music and art therapy. •Autogenic relaxation is a technique where you use visual images and body awareness, while repeating words or terms, to help relax and reduce muscle tension. •Progressive muscle relaxation is a technique where you tense and relax each muscle in your body in order to get a sense of what each one feels like in both a tense and relaxed state. •Visualization is a technique where you visualize specific settings that make you feel relaxed and calm (i.e. Forest, beach with waves, etc.). •Deep breathing is a technique where you purposely breathe deeply from your abdomen in order to release tension and reverse hyperventilation. •Biofeedback is a technique where you learn to control each of your body’s functions, like your heart rate or breathing. Practice deep breathing relaxation. When you’re anxious or afraid you may react by breathing too quickly and hyperventilating. Hyperventilating can intensify your feelings of anxiety and fear and make the situation worse. Breathing deeply can help you relax, reduce your tension, and make you feel less anxious. Follow these steps to relax using deep breathing: •Sit or stand somewhere where you’re comfortable and keep your back straight. Put one of your hands on your chest and put your other hand on your stomach. •Take one slow deep breath in through your nose while counting to four. The hand on your stomach will rise while the hand on your chest shouldn’t move very much. •Hold your breath while counting to seven. •Exhale through your mouth while you count to eight. Push out as much air as you can using your abdominal muscles. This means the hand on your stomach should move downwards, and the hand on your chest shouldn’t move very much. •Repeat these steps until you feel calmer and relaxed. Perform progressive muscle relaxation. Anxious people also tend to be tense, even when they think they’re relaxed. Progressive muscle relaxation can help you distinguish between relaxed and tense muscles so you actually know what it feels like to relax. Practice the following steps twice a day until you really feel it working. •Find a quiet place where you can sit comfortably with your eyes closed. Remove your shoes. •Allow your body to go as loose as you can and take 5 deep breaths. •Select a specific muscle group to begin with (i.e. Your left foot) and focus on those muscles. •Work each of these muscles groups: individual feet; lower leg and foot; entire leg; individual hands; entire arm; buttocks; stomach; chest; neck and shoulders; mouth; eyes; and forehead. •Take one slow, deep breath while tensing the muscles you’ve selected for 5 seconds. Make sure you can feel the tension in your muscles before you move on. •Allow all the tension to leave the muscles you’ve selected while exhaling. •Pay close attention to how these muscles feels when tense and when relaxed. •Stay relaxed for 15 seconds, then select another muscle group and repeat the same steps. Try guided visualization. Using visualization to relax is exactly what it sounds like — you visualize something that you find extremely relaxing in order to reduce your anxiety and reduce your fears. A guided visualization is where you listen to a recording where someone talks you through the process step-by-step. There are many free guided visualizations available online, some with background music or sound effects to help make the process seem more real. Guided visualization recordings will provide the instructions on how to prepare yourself and what to do. They will also vary in length, so you can select the ones that work best for you. Working with Exposure Therapy Develop an exposure plan. The reason you learned relaxation techniques was to keep yourself calm while slowly building up your exposure to dogs. But before you start allowing dogs to be in your presence, you need to develop a plan. This plan should include each step you’re going to go through between now (no dogs) and actually being in their presence. Your plan should be customized for your particular type of fears, and the fearful situations you personally experience. The list should be written in order of least fearful to most fearful so you work your way up to conquering your most fearful situation. An example of a plan to overcome your fear of dogs is as follows: •Step 1 - draw a dog on a piece of paper. •Step 2 - read about dogs. •Step 3 - look at photos of dogs. •Step 4 - look at videos of dogs. •Step 5 - look at dogs through a closed window. •Step 6 - look at dogs through a partially opened window. •Step 7 - look at dogs through an open window. •Step 8 - look at dogs through a doorway. •Step 9 - look at dogs from outside the doorway. •Step 10 - look at a dog (who is on a leash) in the next room. •Step 11 - look at a dog (who is on a leash) in the same room. •Step 12 - sit beside a dog. •Step 13 - pet a dog. Create and practice using an anxiety distress scale. Use the scale to measure your level of anxiety, with 0 being totally relaxed and 100 being the most fear/anxiety/discomfort you have ever experienced. This is a helpful tool for measuring how your distress levels change over time. The anxiety distress scale can also help you decide when it's time for you to move to the next step of your exposure plan. Be patient and take your time. Don't move to the next step too quickly. Engage the help of a trusted friend with a dog. At some point in your plan you will have to place yourself in the presence of an actual dog. You need this dog to be handled by a competent and trustful person, and the dog needs to be predictable and well-trained. Talk to the dog’s owner in advance of executing your plan and explain to them what you’re trying to accomplish. They should be patient and understanding as they may need to simply sit there with their dog for a while as your acclimatize to the dog’s presence. It is not a good idea to use a puppy, even if you think they’re cuter and not as violent. Puppies are not well-trained and can be quite unpredictable. This can cause them to do something unexpected in your presence which may only exacerbate your fear. Eventually, if you’re able to, have your friend teach you basic commands for the dog so you can control the dog yourself. Being in control of the dog may further help you to alleviate your fears once you realize you have the ability to direct their actions. Start facing your fear of dogs. Start with the first item on your plan and carry it out. Repeatedly carry it out until you feel less anxious and fearful doing it. If the step you’re doing allows you to stay in one place (i.e. Watch dogs though a window), slowly expand the length of time you perform the activity as well. Use the relaxation techniques you practiced to help keep yourself calm. Use your journal to keep track of your progress. Write down each attempt you make and how it went. Rate your level of anxiety and fear before and after each attempt. Remember that your exposure to dogs should be planned, prolonged and repeated. Don’t feel you need to rush. Take your time on each step of your plan until you feel comfortable moving onto the next step. Practice regularly. This part of the recovery process is going to be the hardest you’ll have to go through, but the only way it’s going to be successful is if you keep it up. Make a schedule where you practice on a regular basis. If at all possible, practice daily. Reward yourself for the progress you make. If needed, build rewards into your plan so you have an extra goal to work towards for each step. Should you need any further assistance. Please feel free to contact. Regards, Sukanya Biswas.
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I'm suffering from body pains from last 1 week. I can't sleep also. Can you suggest what should be done?

General Physician, Trivandrum
I'm suffering from body pains from last 1 week. I can't sleep also. Can you suggest what should be done?
You maybe having a viral fever or you may have had too much exercise that you are not used to regularly. In any case take rest, drink lots of water and consult again if your problems persist or get worse.
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