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Fear - Symptom, Treatment And Causes

What is Fear?

Fear is a feeling which is created by perceived threat or danger that happens in certain organisms. Fear can cause a change in organ functions and metabolism which can ultimately lead to a behavioral changes, like fleeing, freezing or hiding from the perceive threat.

Fear in human beings can happen because of a specific stimulus that is occurring in the present or even from an expectation of a future threat perceived on the person’s life or body. Response to fear from the perception of danger leads to confrontation or escape by avoiding the threat which is also known as fight-or-flight response. Fear in extreme cases can also lead to paralysis.In animals and human beings, fear is a resultant factor that occurs due to the process of cognition and learning. Thus fear can be classified into two types. The first one is a logical fear and the later illogical fear. Illogical fear is also known as phobia.

What does Psychologist says :

Psychologists have suggested that fear in one of the few innate emotions found in all human beings. Other innate emotions found in human are anger, anxiety, angst, joy, horror, panic, and sadness. However, there is a difference between fear and anxiety. Although both these emotions are closely related to each other, anxiety often happens as a threat which is perceived to be unavoidable or uncontrollable. The amygdala is the place in our brain, which is associated with fear. The amygdala is located behind our pituitary gland. Amygdala generates the secretion of hormones that influences aggression and fear. Once the stimulation of fear and aggression is generated, amygdala elicit the release of the hormones, which put the person into a state of alertness, which makes the person run, move, take a flight and others.

More about Fear :

The fight-or-flight response in human is regulated by our hypothalamus which is a part of our limbic system.

It is interesting to learn over here that once the person returns to the safe mode, and there are no signs of potential threat around, the amygdala sends the information which created fear to the mPFC (medial prefrontal cortex), which stores the data for similar future situation. This process of learning by the brain is also known as memory consolidation.Some of the hormones and chemical elements that are secreted because of fear are epinephrine, norepinephrine, cortisol and calcium.

These hormones and chemicals are responsible for regulating the heart rate, blood flow, dilation of the blood vessels and air passages and others.

Treatable by medical professional Usually self diagnosable Lab test not required Short-term: resolves within days to weeks
Muscular tension on the skin leading to goose-bumps. Fight-or-flight response. Acceleration in breathing and heart rate. Sweating and blushing. Sleep disturbances.

Popular Health Tips

Anxiety Disorders, Phobias and Their Management

MBBS, MD - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Delhi
Anxiety Disorders, Phobias and Their Management

Anxiety is one of those things that almost every individual faces at some point of time in his/her life. You can be anxious about many things. Sometimes, however, these can lead to a more complex set of problems called ‘phobias; where a person develops anxiety towards a seemingly benign object/situation. For example, a person would be uncomfortable in water, and develop a phobia of swimming, or a person can be allergic to insects and get a phobia/fear of insects. 

Anxiety can lead to an emotional pain - a pain where there are no physical attributes. Having an anxiety disorder can hamper a person from performing his/her regular activities. Let us have an in-depth look into anxiety disorders, and their possible management. 

Understanding Anxiety: 

Sometimes, there may be no underlying cause of anxiety. Sometimes, the environment or the incidents a person experiences in his lifetime, can precipitate anxiety disorders. There are several symptoms of anxiety, and some of them can include mood swings, confusion, decreased self-esteem, fatigue, weakness, and general fear of one's surroundings, lack of concentration, and a general feeling of helplessness. The person's sleep pattern gets disturbed, and as a result, insomnia sets in. He/she might be unable to perform the activities that they were able to earlier. Anxiety sometimes causes the blood pressure to shoot up, and can result in heart-related complications. In severe cases, anxiety can lead to depression and complete helplessness, and this can result in suicidal tendencies. 

Anxiety is one of the most common mental health problems that individuals face today. Our changing lifestyle too has contributed a great deal towards it. Modern day urban living is highly stressed with long working hours, unhealthy diet, and frequent smoking and drinking, all of which can trigger anxiety disorders. 


Anxiety management is not a single step process, and it involves layers of planning. The primary part of the treatment involves the evaluation of the patient first. The underlying cause of the anxiety has to be addressed first and evaluated. The trauma related to that particular cause has to be analyzed, and only then can the physical treatment start. The psychiatrist can help only if the person who is suffering is more open to treatment. Medication certainly works, and anti-depressants, as advised by the physician, should be initiated. Sometimes, a change of job or the environment can help a great deal in minimizing anxiety levels. Friends and family members should also pitch in, offering the support the individual needs. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a Psychiatrist.

5628 people found this helpful

Bladder Cancer Surveillance: Understanding The Challenges Associated With It!

Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS), MS, MBBS
Urologist, Delhi
Bladder Cancer Surveillance: Understanding The Challenges Associated With It!

Cancer is probably the most dreaded disease of our time. There are many different types of cancers, based on the parts of the body affected. As the name suggest, bladder cancer originates in the bladder. It typically affects elderly people but can occur at any age. In most cases, bladder cancer is treatable as long as it is detected in the early stages. However, it has a high risk of recurrence and hence cancer surveillance is needed for many years after treatment.

There are a number of challenges associated with bladder cancer surveillance, such as: 

  1. Anxiety: As expected, it can be quite nerve wrecking to be constantly tested for cancer and have to wait for the results of your tests. A cystoscopic examination is one of the main methods of testing for bladder cancer. Most patients show both pre-procedural and post-procedural anxiety. To deal with this anxiety and stress try meditating or practising yoga. Going for a walk regularly can also help ease the symptoms of anxiety and improve your overall health. Connect with other bladder cancer patients who can understand your experience and fears.
  2. Adherence: After the cancer has been cured, bladder cancer patients need to be tested at least once every 3-6 months for the first three years and annually thereafter. This frequency increases for Nonmuscle-invasive bladder cancer patients. Many patients prefer to use urine-based tests rather than a cystoscopic examination, but this may lead to more unwanted stress and anxiety and these tests do have false positive results at the time. Adhering to this schedule is often difficult and most patients do not strictly adhere to this schedule. However, this is completely in the hands of the patient. The more regularly you get yourself checked up, the higher the chances of detecting bladder cancer tumours in the initial stages and getting it treated.
  3. Related infections: Bladder cancer patients have a higher risk of developing tumors in the ureter and kidneys. Tumors may also develop in the inner lining of these organs. The risk of these tumors depends on the stage and grade of the initial disease and the response of the tumor to treatment. As with any other infection and health disorder, your food and water intake plays an important role in keeping toxins at bay. While there have been no proven supplements to help prevent bladder cancer, drink plenty of water to flush your system and keep it clean.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3414 people found this helpful

Phobia Treatment!

DPM, MBBS, FIPS, Fellow of Academy of General Education (FAGE), Faculty RACGP , Senior Resident Psychiatrist, Ex Inceptor RCPsych
Psychiatrist, Bangalore
Phobia Treatment!

Pharmaco therapy assisted counselling is safer and effective.

Pharmacotherapy - Know More About It!

DPM, MBBS, FIPS, Fellow of Academy of General Education (FAGE), Faculty RACGP , Senior Resident Psychiatrist, Ex Inceptor RCPsych
Psychiatrist, Bangalore
Pharmacotherapy - Know More About It!

Yes, many symptoms disappear with drugs.
There are better supplements to stay healthy mentally needs consult an experienced psychiatrist.

फोबिया का इलाज - Phobiya Ka Ilaj!

Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS)
Ayurveda, Lakhimpur Kheri
फोबिया का इलाज - Phobiya Ka Ilaj!

फोबिया का मतलब है डर. डर, एक ऐसी बीमारी है जिसमें आदमी किसी चीज से भयभीत होता है और मानसिक परेशानी का सामना करता है. कई बार यह अत्यधिक और बिना किसी कारण की प्रतिक्रिया के कारण भी उत्पन्न होता है. यदि आप फोबिया जैसे किसी बीमारी से पीड़ित हैं तो आपके मन में आतंक की एक गहरी भावना महसूस हो सकती है. यह डर किसी निश्चित स्थान या किसी विशेष परिस्थिति के कारण उत्पन्न हो सकता है. फोबिया एक मानसिक परेशानी जरूर है लेकिन यह चिंता विकार से अलग है. इसका जुड़ाव हमारे मन से है. फोबिया के अलग-अलग कारणों और प्रभाव के आधार पर कई विशिष्ट प्रकार हैं - ऊंचाई का डर, सार्वजनिक स्थान या सुनसान जगहों का डर इत्यादि. यदि आप दैनिक सामाजिक परिस्थितियों में किसी प्रकार की मानसिक परेशानी को महसूस करते हुए शर्मिंदगी का अनुभव करते हैं तो आपको फोबिया हो सकता है. कई बार कुछ सामान्य फोबिया में सुरंगें, हाईवे, अधिक पानी, उड़ना, जानवर और खून आदि देखकर डर का अनुभव होना जैसे कारण भी दिखाई पड़ते हैं. फोबिया के मरीज को परेशान परेशानी किसी व्यक्ति को गंभीर रूप से अक्षम या परेशान बना सकती हैं. इस से पीड़ित लोग अक्सर ऐसा महसूस करते हैं कि उनका डर पूरी तरह से सही नहीं है लेकिन इसके बावजूद वह इस इससे छुटकारा पाने में नाकाम रहते हैं. अक्सर ऐसी घटनाओं से अक्सर ऐसी घटनाओं के बार-बार होने से किसी व्यक्ति के व्यक्तिगत संबंधों स्कूल या ऑफिस आदि में बाधा उत्पन्न होने लगती है.

फोबिया का उपचार-
फोबिया का उपचार फोबिया के उपचार करने के लिए कुश दवाओं के प्रकार के बारे में जानना आवश्यक है जो कि इसके इलाज के लिए कारगर साबित होती है. फोबिया के उपचार के लिए दबाव का इस्तेमाल किसी चिकित्सक के परामर्श से ही किया जाना बेहतर होता है. आमतौर पर यह दवाएं फोबिया के उपचार में निर्णायक भूमिका निभाती हैं.

बीटा ब्लॉकर्स-
ये दवाएं फोबिया के लक्षण और घबराहट (जैसे तेजी से और कठोरता से दिल धड़कना) जैसी समस्याओं को कम कर देती है, और इनके साथ-साथ टांगों व बाजूओं के कांपने की स्थिति को भी कम कर देती है. कई मरीजों ने बताया कि ये दवाएं उनकी दबी आवाज को भी ठीक होने में मदद करती है.
दवाएं आम तौर पर फोबिया से पीड़ित लोगों को ही दी जाती हैं. ये दवाएं मस्तिष्क में सेरोटोनिन को प्रभावित करती हैं, जिससे परिणामस्वरूप मूड अच्छा हो जाता है.
बेंज़ोडायज़ेपींस दवाएं चिंता के लक्षणों को कम करने में मदद करती है. जो लोग शराब आदि का सेवन कर रहे हैं, तो उनको सेडेटिव दवाए नहीं देनी चाहिए.

बिहेवियरल थेरेपी

कॉग्निटिव बिहेवियरल थेरेपी-
यह थेरेपी फोबिया के इलाज के लिए सबसे ज्यादा इस्तेमाल की जानी वाली चिकित्सिय थेरेपी है. थेरेपिस्ट पीड़ितों को उनके फोबिया के कारण को समझने के अलग-अलग तरीके सिखातें हैं, जिससे उन्हें अपने डर का सामना करने में आसानी महसूस होती है. डर को देखने व समझने के अन्य वैकल्पिक तरीकों को समझाया जाता है. रोगी को सिखाया जाता है, कि उसके जीवन की गुणवत्ता पर एक गलत दृष्टिकोण का क्या प्रभाव हो सकता है, और कैसे एक नया तरीका जिंदगी को बदल सकता है. थेरेपी का पूरा फॉकस मरीज के अंदर नाकारात्मक विचारों, बेकार की धारणाओं और फोबिया की स्थिति के रिएक्शन का पता लगाने और उसको बदलने पर होता है.

अगर यह थेरेपी ठीक तरीके से हो पाए, तो इसकी मदद से पीड़ितों के डर के प्रति उनकी प्रतिक्रिया में परिवर्तन करने में सहायता कर सकता है. रोगियों को उनके डर के कारणों से धीरे-धीरे बढ़ा कर अवगत कराया जाता है. जो व्यक्ति किसी विमान में यात्रा करने से डरते हैं, तो उनके सिर्फ विमान यात्रा के बारे में सोचने से शुरू किया जाता है. उसके बाद विमान को देखना. फिर एयरपोर्ट पर जाना और फिर शायद प्रैक्टिस सिमुलेटेड प्लेन कैबिन (विमान जैसा कमरा) में बैठना, अंत विमान में यात्रा करना.

फोबिया से बचाव के उपाय-
फोबिया की रोकथाम कैसे की जा सकती है? हालांकि ऐसे कई विशिष्ट फोबिया हैं, जिनकी रोकथाम नहीं की जा सकती. प्रारंभिक बीच-बचाव और एक दर्दनाक अनुभव के बाद उसका उपचार जैसे किसी जानवर द्वारा हमला करना उस व्यक्ति में गंभीर फोबिया विकसित होने से रोकथाम कर सकता है. अपने डर से निपटने के द्वारा आप अपने बच्चे को उत्कृष्ट कौशल सीखा सकते हैं, और उनकी हिम्मत बढ़ा सकते हैं. यह बच्चों में फोबिया विकसित होने से रोकथाम करता है.

Popular Questions & Answers

Hi I am sometimes feeling low in confidence and sometimes good. I also got feared when I see group of people, when loud voice, when talk to some senior person in office. I didn't understand why it's happening. I am brave but I have to convince myself a lot. I also got fear to talk people. But my professional sales guy. I don't what's going on. Kindly through some light on this.

BASM, MD, MS (Counseling & Psychotherapy), MSc - Psychology, Certificate in Clinical psychology of children and Young People, Certificate in Psychological First Aid, Certificate in Positive Psychology, Positive Psychiatry and Mental Health
Psychologist, Palakkad
Hello and welcome to Lybrate. I have reviewed your query and here is my advice. I can see that you are low in confidence, you lack general positive attitude, fear for unnecessary reasons etc. I need more information so as to diagnose your issue and provide treatment. Hope I have answered your query. You can contact me for further advice and treatment options. Let me know if I can assist you further. Take care.

I have needle and blood phobia. I want to overcome my fear. Vomiting nausea starts when I try getting injections. Too much scared.

BASM, MD, MS (Counseling & Psychotherapy), MSc - Psychology, Certificate in Clinical psychology of children and Young People, Certificate in Psychological First Aid, Certificate in Positive Psychology, Positive Psychiatry and Mental Health
Psychologist, Palakkad
Hello and welcome to Lybrate, I have reviewed your query and here is my advice. Fear and phobia are definitely due to irrational illogical conclusions. This can only be cured with the help of rational thoughts. I suggest cognitive reconstruction and cbt for you. Fear and phobias can cause havoc in anybody’s life. Interestingly fear and phobias are common. Can fear and phobias curable? Why not? In my therapeutic practice, I cured many. I am sharing some of my gem tips. You can contact me for further advice and treatment options. Let me know if I can assist you further. Take care.

One of my friend was addicted to cannabis. He used to take 10-12 rounds a day. Now the condition is very bad. He has a fear that somebody has kidnapped his girlfriend and sexually harassing her. Even after a good video call with his girlfriend, he is soo worried. It is his false believes only. His girlfriend is all right. His parents didn't admitted him to hospital they kept him in the home only in room. He always call me n ask for help as his girlfriend is not safe. N saying please help she is not safe call somebody to save her. I don't know in present day whether he is taking cannabis or not. I want to ask what should I suggest his girlfriend n family to help him.

BASM, MD, MS (Counseling & Psychotherapy), MSc - Psychology, Certificate in Clinical psychology of children and Young People, Certificate in Psychological First Aid, Certificate in Positive Psychology, Positive Psychiatry and Mental Health
Psychologist, Palakkad
Dear lybrate user. I can understand. Cannabis addiction comes under SUBSTANCE ABUSE AND ADDICTION. Deaddiction treatment is best suited for such addictions. Medically assisted drug detoxification or alcohol detoxification alone is ineffective as a treatment for addiction. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) recommends detoxification followed by both medication (where applicable) and behavioral therapy, followed by relapse prevention.
1 person found this helpful

Hello Sir, These days I am devoid of good sleep because of unnecessary fears (fear of failure). It started showing it''s ill effects on my health as it's evident from coloured urine, unrest, sleepy mood and lethargy. What do you think I should do to get rid of these ills? Please show me a solution.

MS - Counseling, M.Phil - Psychology
Psychologist, Gurgaon
Go for counseling and psychotherapy to learn effective ways to challenge your negative thoughts. You understand that the way we think the way we feel and the way we act and together they affect our body accordingly. In cognitive behaviour therapy, you will learn to challenge and replace your negative thoughts with more rationalistic thoughts.
1 person found this helpful

Table of Content

What is Fear?

What does Psychologist says :

More about Fear :

Play video
Know more about Fear
Positive and Negative aspects of Fear
Positive and Negative aspects of Fear

Hi I am Dr. Priyanka Srivastav a practicing psychologist in Noida and with Lybrate. Today lets understand what is fear. I know fear is a very common issue which everyone is facing in their day to day life situation. So what is fear? It is nothing but feeling of stress, apprehension or alarm caused by a sense of impending nature. Fear is generally within ourselves, but we all feel that fear is controlled by external factors. As human beings we all believe that if logic or reason is being given to a problem then we are not in a fearful situation. We can manage that situation so very well. So fear is very within our own selves.

Let us take an example, it is a very day to day life example. If we have to go to the railway station to catch a train, and we find the train is late, and we don t get the reason why the train is late we can get a apprehensive feeling, we will feel restless about the situation. But if the train is late because of some logic or rational reason behind it then we are relaxed and we will wait for the train to come. So fear can be easily overcome if there is a logic or reason behind that particular situation. So as a human being if a logis is given surely this feeling can be overcome.

Let's take another few examples related to this. In a dark room if we enter we have fear that some animals will be crawling over the floor, but if we switch on the light and see no animals on the floor, although we had a fear before entering to the room but if we switch on the light and see no animals it's just our imagination and the fear, so fear is again within our own selves. It is not controlled by the external factors. There are both positive and negative aspects to this fear and we generally experience fear in a very negative aspect. The positive aspect of fear is that it leads to more understanding more thoughtfulness of our mind. It leads to more creativity, we tend to think more into the details to come to the right and rational solutions to the situations which we are encountering.

So this fear can be overcome if we are very rational to the situation. Secondly the fear can be overcome if we forget the situation which has happened with us, if we forget certain past bad experiences of our life, then we can surely overcome fear. For example the bad experience can be one with our friend, with our college-mate, if we had a bad experience and after a couple of years or after a decade or so we meet with the same person and if we encounter with same type of fear then it is not the right way of managing the situation. The right way would be to analyse the situation, to understand it and to forget what has happened during that past time, so that we can easily manage our fear.

If you want to consult furthermore related to the queries about fear you can contact me through Lybrate online or offline mode of it.
Play video
Hello everybody,

I am Doctor Dr. Gurwant Singh Lamba, Gastroenterologist. I look after diseases of the liver and the digestive system. So today we are going to talk about investigation which is very commonly used investigation these days but about which lot of patients have got lot of queries and questions and they appear in their minds and they are generally apprehensive of getting that investigation done and investigation I am talking about is Endoscopy.

You all must have heard of this term Endoscopy which is generally done to diagnose many of the digestive disease problems and it is often prescribed by doctors. So what I have seen is that there are lot of myth and misunderstandings about this procedure in the patient s mind and they are reluctant to get this, they have heard things from people around without any substantive evidence or anything and they are generally not very willing to get this investigation done. So what I am going to enlighten you today is about Endoscopy.

Now, believe me, it s a very very simple investigation, the upper GI endoscopy as we call, is to see the about the problems which may be there in the upper digestive track. With Endoscopy we can see the food pipe, we can see the stomach and we can see the upper part of the intestine. So any disease in this area which can be seen directly, we can put endoscope and we can see these regions directly and then accordingly we can do the treatment. So it s a very very useful tool, it s a very simple investigation. It doesn t require any admission. It can be done on openly basis. It can be done without any anesthesia or without any sedation but suppose somebody is very apprehensive, so in those patients we can always give a short sedation for few minutes and do the Endoscopy procedure. In every Endoscopy procedure, diagnostic don t take more than 2 minutes to finish. So it s a very brief simple procedure and one can go to one s work or one can go to whatever he has to do after the Endoscopy.

You don t have to take any leave, you don t have to miss any appointments because of it. So it is a very simple thing and it is done with the help of a flexible you can say flexible long camera. It s a very sophisticated instrument made from very sophisticated rubber material with some light fibers. It s a very smooth flexible instrument which causes no trauma to the body, which causes no injury to the body in any way and it s a costly instrument and the Endoscopy is done through that and the patient is generally in lying done position, we put him the endoscope in his mouth and then within 2 minutes we examine his whole upper digestive track through it and lot of things and lot of diseases which can be diagnosed through it specially ulcers in the stomach, ulcers in the food pipe, severe acidity, tumors of the food pipe, tumors of the stomach, diurnal ulcers.

There are so many different diseases. It s very useful tool in liver disease patients where we can pick up some veins which get dilated and their food pipe and the stomach. So all these disease can be seen with the help of this endoscope. Endoscopy is not only a diagnostic tool, it s a very important therapeutic tool also. There are lots of diseases which we can treat with Endoscopy also. For example a patient comes with the bit blood in vomiting. It s a very common situation we get such patients every day. They vomited and there was blood in it. So our aim is to do the Endoscopy quickly in that patiently, see from where the bleeding is occurring and suppose there is a tear in his mucosa, suppose there is a ulcer there which is bleeding, we can inject medicines there, we can spray medicines over there, we can do laser therapy over it, we can put some clips over it to stop the bleeding if there is a vessel which has punctured and bleeding.

So there are lots of therapeutic applications also where a treatment can be done through Endoscopy and many of these treatments may be for example in case of bleeding, may be life-saving treatments and instead of the patient going in for an extensive long surgery which will which will require time, lot of rehabilitation time after the surgery, simple endoscopic procedure which can be finished in few minutes can take care of the problem. There are patients who have tumors which are bleeding, we have modalities which can control tumor bleed also. Then for diagnostic purposes we can also take samples from inside and get them tested. So all these things can be done with the help of Endoscope.

Another very interesting thing which we do with Endoscope is removal of foreign bodies. You may have seen there are many small children who swallow coins or pens or even some older patients also accidentally swallow something and it goes inside the stomach and obviously it may a needle, it may be a pen, it may be a clip anything. So all these things now don t require any surgery. We can with the help of endoscope in a few minutes almost every kind of foreign body which has gone inside and which is still there in the upper GI can be removed with the help of Endoscope.

Then we can do many pediatric procedure through Endoscope for example somebody who would have tumor of the food pipe, he cannot eat. So we can insert a stent or an artificial food pipe and make him eat. If there is a blockage in the stomach and the food is not going ahead, we can again we can put in a pipe to open that blockage where the patient can then start eating. So these are the various things which can be done by Endoscope. It s a very useful and simple tool and I think it has helped us in saving many lives. It has helped us in reducing morbidity in many patients. It has helped us in diagnosing so many diseases.

So I think there should be no fear in getting endoscopy. It s a very simple harmless procedure. There are hardly any side effects of the procedure that matters in complication of the Endoscopy. So if an Endoscopy is prescribed by the specialist, don t hesitate to get it done and because it is very good tool to diagnose so many diseases and timely diagnosis will help us in treating the disease faster and in a much better way.

Thank you.
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