WHAT IS EMETOPHOBIA?
Emetophobia is the extreme fear of vomiting, seeing vomit, watching other people vomit, or feeling sick. It is clinically diagnosed as Specific Phobia in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-V). Emetophobia is much different from other phobias because the feared experience happens within one's own body.
It is guaranteed that, at some point, we will vomit. Those who are afraid of heights can simply make the decision not to go anywhere high. People who are agoraphobic can stay indoors.
However, nausea, vomiting, or even seeing someone else vomit can occur without warning and against one's will. If you become sick enough that your body requires you to vomit, it WILL happen whether you like it or not.
WHY DO YOU USE A TRAUMA-INFORMED APPROACH IN TREATMENT?
Let's face it. No one wants to be sick. Unfortunately, it is a fact of life. However, for someone with emetophobia, becoming sick enough to vomit or witnessing someone else vomit can be a traumatic experience. Emetophobia is often sparked by a traumatic experience involving vomit. Emetophobic trauma is something that we will explore and address in our sessions.
Therefore, I take a trauma-informed approach to my work. Trauma informed means that I provide care that will avoid re-trauamtizing my patient. I shift my mindset from the perspective of asking myself "What is wrong with this patient?" to "What happened to this patient?"
WHY DO YOU TREAT OCD AS WELL?
Emetophobia is considered to be an anxiety disorder given that the foundational symptoms are based in anxiety and fear. Emetophobia can also present with symptoms often seen with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Patients with emetophobia often present with obsessive thoughts about vomit and vomiting accompanied by compulsions such as checking dates of food and excessively washing their hands.
WHO DO YOU TREAT?
I treat anyone presenting with symptoms of emetophobia. Emetophobia often begins in childhood. Thus, I see patients of all ages. Some are very young and in the early stages of their disorder. Some are adults who have lived with emetophobia for decades and have finally reached a point where they feel that they need professional intervention. Whether you believe you have mild symptoms or profound symptoms, I'm here to help.
WHY SHOULD I SEE YOU?
I am one of the few psychotherapists in the nation who exclusively treats emetophobia. I am a subject matter expert in this space. Emetophobia is not something that most therapists have extensive experience with. Most have no experience with it at all! Emetophobia is notoriously difficult to treat, but I am up for the challenge 365 days a year.
I am passionate about helping people with emetophobia because I experienced it at the height my adolescence. I know firsthand how lonely it can feel to experience this phobia when everyone around you struggles to understand what you're going through and how serious it is. Neither I or my parents knew where to turn. It took many years to reach the point that I refer to as "recovery". I don't want it to take many years for you or your child. We can work together to expedite that process.
Emetophobia can significantly decrease the quality of your life. I want to help you improve your overall mental health and live a life that you love. My goal is to get my patients to a point where they are living what they consider to be a good life. Contact me today to get started with treatment.