Ways A Psychologist Helps With A Homeowner’s Excessive Spider Fears

Arachnophobia or irrational fears of spiders affect many people and may make homeownership difficult. After all, homeowners are likely to see many spiders in their life in their home and, if they see too many, relaxing in their home may be very hard. Thankfully, psychologists can provide phobia treatments that walk a person away from these irrational fears.

Pest Phobias May Trouble Many Homeowners Without Psychologist Help

Homeowners afraid of spiders and other pests may find it hard to tolerate these creatures in their home and may end up experiencing emotional troubles when they do. Such spider phobias are not uncommon, but can thankfully be managed through various psychological treatments. The options available often vary depending on a person's phobia severity and other issues.

Psychologists can help homeowners with pest phobias in a few different ways. Talk therapy is one of the more effective options and can be useful for managing this concern. For example, a psychologist may let the homeowner discuss why they're so afraid of pests like spiders. This may include experiences where they were startled by spiders or simply a repulsion about these pests.

Psychiatrists can then try treatments like cognitive behavioral therapy to help people with a spider phobia. This process includes changing a person's behaviors and attitudes and replacing them with healthier ones. For example, the psychiatrist may work with the homeowner to help them understand that spiders are mostly harmless and very unlikely to attack or bite a person unless provoked.

Part of this process may include desensitization, which requires exposing a homeowner to the pest that they fear. Typically, this exposure starts out small, as the therapist and the patient may talk about spiders, read about spiders, look at pictures of spiders, and then bring a spider to the session. They may even identify spiders in a person's home together to help a person feel more comfortable with them there.

Some exposure therapy sessions may include placing a safe spider on a person's arm and letting it walk around. This option usually comes later in a person's treatment, long after they've mostly managed their fear of spiders. The psychologist will talk with their patient during this process, perhaps even holding their hands as the patient accepts the spider crawling on their skin.

In more severe cases, people going through phobia treatment may receive temporary anxiety medication to minimize their fears. This problem may be more common when a spider fear causes homeowners to struggle to feel comfortable in their home. Once the spider phobia has been properly managed, psychologists typically help their patients transition off these anxiety medications.