IntroductionHave encounters a spider again, she startedIntroductionHave encounters a spider again, she started

IntroductionHave you ever encountered a spider while hiking in one of the country parks in Hong Kong, perhaps they could also be found in your household? In this report we will emphasis on fear of arachnophobia, by using a previous episode of a girl who had been bitten by a spider and had been traumatised by it since then. By using 3 theories which are James-Lange, Cannon-Bard and Schachter’s Two-factor theory we will analysis the episode and provide a solution to fear of arachnophobia.Our Episode Our previous episode is about Steffanie’s arachnophobia. When Steffanie was 15, she went hiking with her friends.She stumbled upon a spider. She frozen and stood still.The spider bite her on the hand. Ever since then, her life changed. She can’t withstand the appearance of the spider.So when she encounters a spider again, she started trembling, her heart rate increases.Then, she spent considerable time worrying about spiders, ensuring she will not come in contact with a spider, and start to avoid places and activities in order to avoid spiders.She will often avoid places where spiders will appear. As well as check for spiders in rooms, she can’t go to other outdoor activities, which greatly affect her social circle.She can’t even go out alone at night because she is afraid that spiders are somewhere in the dark.The Doctor diagnosed her with Arachnophobia.conCognitive components of our episode are the visual shock from the negative appearance of spider which are giant, hairy and dark. The unpleasant feeling of spider crawling on skin causes a prickling feel. Thoughts towards spider, I may die because I was bitten by a possibly poisonous spider.Causes of FearThere are no definite causes of arachnophobia and it may varies from people to people. However we would like to introduce the 3 main causes of arachnophobia: evolution, cultural specific and personal experiences. First, evolutionary causes.Itsy Bitsy Spider Experiment         Before being able to propose the “Itsy Bitsy Spider Experiment”. Previous experiments were conducted to prove fear of arachnophobia. One study about 9-months old infants exposed to spiders and snakes with an addition of fearful facial expressions (Stefanie et al, 2017). They were able to prove a hypothesis however, it was not successful when applied with snakes or fish. The explanation is due to the results obtain which spiders were paired with fearful facial expressions, but this can also occur to snakes and fish even without the presences of emotional context (Hoehl and Pauen, 2017). Therefore, previous experiments were not able to prove evolutionary origins.         Itsy Bitsy Spider experiment had a difference from previous experiments and studies may not be able to indicate any evolutionary origins in arachnophobia. However, in a study researcher from Institute in Germany and Uppsala University in Sweden, 48 six-months-old infants were invited for a test including parental consent from their parents (Stefanie et al, 2017). Researches want to find out whether infants would increase in their pupil sizes. Infants were shown images of spiders, snakes and fishes separately, all these images are shown with a clear white paper this is done to prevent a social context conflict.Findings of the experiment shows that, when young infants view images of snakes and spiders, their consistent reaction consists of large pupils. Thus, it may show signs that fear of these creatures could be innate (Stefanie et al, 2017). Graph shown on the left, reveals a trend of pupil dilations when compared with spiders and fishes. It shows larger pupils in spiders at 3 seconds time interval (Stefanie et al, 2017). This can be a possible biological explanation of activity in the noradrenergic system in the brain, it is like the system that processes stress.James-Lange TheoryThis theory talks about how once an individual observes an external stimulus, it will result in a physiological response. This means by experiencing physiological responses it also depend on how an individual interprets our body reaction, this meant physiological emotions such as facial colour can deduce certain emotions.An example using our own episode involves our subject from the episode spotting a spider, this causes the subject to experience physical arousal. Which in this case the physiological responses are muscle tension, and results in the subject expressing emotions after having a physiological response of being afraid of the spider.To support James-Lange’s theory, a study of hand & face temperature was conducted in 1996 by psychologist Rimm-Kaufman & Kagen. A study of a group of women are separated into different groups to view films. These films are positive and negative films respectively. And results concluded that a change in skin temperature can be associated with feeling states. This makes skin temperature an informative variable for emotion research (Rimm-Kaufman & Kagan, 1996).However, the limitations of James-Lange’s theory is challenged by Cannon-Bard’s theory, because they argued that physical responses and emotions can occur at the same time. Moreover, no clinical findings can support the theoryCannon-Bard TheoryIn Cannon-Bard Theory of emotion, it states that an event will cause simultaneous arousal and emotion. When a stimulating even occurs, sensory signals are transmitted to thalamus of the brain. After the thalamus receives the signal, it pass on the information to two structures: the hypothalamus and the brain cortex. The hypothalamus is responsible for arousal and physiological changes while the brain cortex is responsible for emotional. In our case, I seeing a spider is the stimulus. Whenever I see spider, I feel afraid and my muscles get tensed at the same time, preparing to run away from the animal.Schachter’s Two-factor theoryBest TheoryTreatmentsThere are three main aspects causing a specific phobia: biological factors, social factors and psychological factors. This time, we would like to talk about more about psychological factors and ways to treat our phobia. Effective treatments include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), systematic desensitization and exposure therapy. The first treatment is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). It is a talking therapy that can help managing the phobia by changing the way how you think and behave. (Albin, J., & Bailey, E., 2014). During a CBT treatment, participant will be encouraged to focus on current problems rather than past histories. Moreover, the treatment will break down the phobia into separate parts, such as thoughts, cognitive awareness and physiological change so as to let participant understand more about what is really happening. CBT is especially helpful to address dysfunctional emotions and negative behaviors through goal setting and various coping techniques.The second treatment is systematic desensitization. It aims to remove the fear responses of a phobia and substitute it with a relaxation response to the conditioned stimulus gradually using counter conditioning. Throughout the systematic desensitization treatment, a picture of spider will be showed to the person with arachnophobia. As time passes, pulse of the person will become stable, which is a sign of slightly accepting the stimulus. Gradually, the person will be asked to look at a real tiny spider and even touch it. And lastly, the person will be encouraged to hold a normal size spider when the arousal of fear decreases.The last treatment is exposure treatment. According to American Psychological Association (2017), it aims to help people confronting their feared environment or objects. It can be further divided into four types: in vivo exposure, imaginal exposure, virtual reality exposure and interoceptive exposure which will be further explained with our episode as an example. For in vivo exposure, clients need to face their feared environment or objects in the real life. For instance, Steffanie may asked to hold an non-toxic spider in hand like Tarantula which is a kind of common exotic pets nowadays, she needs to learn to afford the stress of holding a spider to decrease her fear and reaction when seeing spiders in the future. For imaginal exposure, patients need to imagine their feared environment or objects. For example, Steffanie may required to recalled her phobic memory of facing spider to decline her fear. For virtual reality exposure, clients can use the virtual reality technology to simulate their feared objects or environment. Steffanie can use apps in some gadgets to replicate an environment where spiders are in there or to play games with spiders. This lowered her wary towards spiders and reduce fear steadily. For interoceptive exposure, the psychologists need to convince the client to have a sense of safety of the physical symptoms when encountering their feared objects or environment. As mentioned in the episode, Steffanie has increasing heart rate while facing spiders. She might asked to do exercise in order to increase her heart rate. She needs to reflect that tachycardia is not a dangerous sign.ConclusionReferences