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Psychology-Anxiety Disorders

Psychology-Anxiety Disorders

Exposure Therapy

Potential Problems with Exposure Therapy

Although exposure therapy may be effective in eliminating phobia, it has some potential problems that need to be put into consideration. One of them is that it subjects the patient to stress. When a patient is preparing for exposure therapy, he or she has to think about the exposure they may get to a specific phobia. This may stress some individuals, particularly those with a serious phobia, because they need to get over the phobia but may not be ready for direct exposure. Patients are also subjected to stress during the therapy because they are required to directly face their fear until they are ready to embrace it (Becker et al., 2019). The therapist may also not offer the best emotional support because they do not share the same fear with a patient, thus subjecting the patient to mental torture. For example, in the Intensive Exposure Therapy video, when the therapist closes the elevator door, the patient rushes to exit the elevator. However, the therapist was not experiencing the fear that holds and pushes her back inside (koritzls, 2008). The second problem is that patients could suffer from panic attacks or symptoms associated with such attacks because, as mentioned by psychologist Lars-Goran, they are not prepared with relaxation or deep breathing since they are required to be anxious to embrace their fear (Smethells, 2012). The third problem is that the phobia can return in a more intensified manner if a patient ends the therapy prematurely.

Willingness to Directly Face a Fear

I would not be willing to directly face fear because my fears subject me to elevated anxiety levels. Besides that, I am confident that facing my fears would make it worse for me to deal with them because I would have a panic attack if I faced them directly and be unwilling to cooperate with whoever is helping me to deal with them. In addition, my immediate response when I encounter situations that expose me to fear is freezing, and I cannot move or speak. Therefore, I would not want to be in such a position when I am directly facing a fear.


Becker, C. B., Farrell, N. R., & Waller, G. (2019). Overview of exposure therapy. Exposure Therapy for Eating Disorders, 11-18.

koritzls. (2008). Intensive Exposure Therapy [Video]. Retrieved from

Smethells, J. (2012). Snake Phobia Behavioral (Exposure) Therapy [Video]. YouTube.


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Psychology-Anxiety Disorders

As you learned in this unit Anxiety Disorders can be treated with exposure therapy. If you have not already done so make sure that you have read about this treatment method in the readings and lecture notes. Also, make sure that you have watched the videos on the use of this method for a snake phobia and for agoraphobia in the lecture notes. (ATTACHED)

Now, in 1-2 paragraphs respond to these two questions:

Psychology-Anxiety Disorders

Psychology-Anxiety Disorders

Do you see any potential problems with this method?
Would you be willing to directly face a fear? Why or why not?

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