Claustrophobia is a fear of confined spaces. Many people with this condition will try very hard to avoid any confined space. This can include tunnels, lifts, public toilets, and tube trains. Unfortunately, avoiding places such as these can reinforce the fear. 

When someone who has claustrophobia is in a confined space, they might can anxious, other people might have a panic attack. 

We offer mental health support for Selby and the surrounding areas. Why not give us a call? Our phone line is open from 7 pm – 10 pm, 365 days of the year.

Call us on (01757) 642 399. If you call before our phone lines are open and we cannot answer you will be diverted to an NHS Helpline. 

The Symptoms of Claustrophobia

People who suffer from claustrophobia often have panic attacks. These panic attacks can be very distressing and they can cause a range of physical symptoms such as:

  • Butterflies in the stomach
  • Chest pain or tightness
  • Chills or hot flushes
  • Choking sensation
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Feeling disorientated or confused
  • Feeling faint
  • Feeling sick
  • Headaches
  • Pins and needles or numbness
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating
  • Trembling

The Causes of Claustrophobia 

Claustrophobia is usually be caused by an event that took place when the sufferer was very young. They may have been:

  • Abused or bullied
  • Kept in a confined space or trapped there 

Alternatively, they may have a parent who suffers from claustrophobia.

This condition can be triggered by unpleasant situations such as being stuck on a crowded train. 

Find out how claustrophobia is diagnosed here

Treating Claustrophobia 

Most people who suffer from claustrophobia know that they have it and they haven’t been diagnosed with it. However, a diagnosis can lead to treatment. This treatment can be very beneficial.

Claustrophobia is often treated by gradually exposing the sufferer to a confined space such as a crowded train, for example. This is known as self-exposure therapy. 

Cognitive behavioural therapy is often used to help those who need help with claustrophobia in Barlby.

When you Have a Panic Attack

The next time you have a panic attack, try to remind yourself that the thoughts and sensations will pass. If you have a panic attack when you’re driving, please park somewhere safe. 

Try to focus your mind on something that is visible and non-threatening. Look at your watch and concentrate on the time passing. Look at products in a supermarket or concentrate on the view. 

Panic attacks can last from 5 to 30 minutes. Make sure you’re somewhere safe and remember that these thoughts and feelings will pass. 

We offer mental health support for Selby and the surrounding areas. Why not give us a call? Our phone line is open from 7 pm – 10 pm, 365 days of the year.

Call us on (01757) 642 399. If you call before our phone lines are open and we cannot answer you will be diverted to an NHS Helpline.

Interested in helping those who are struggling with their mental health? We offer Mental Health First Aid training in Selby. Contact us at info@communitea.org.uk