Coping and support

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Living with agoraphobia can make life difficult. Professional treatment can help you overcome this disorder or manage it effectively so you don't become a prisoner to your fears.

You can also take these steps to cope and care for yourself when you have agoraphobia:

  • Stick to your treatment plan. Take medications as directed. Keep therapy appointments. Consistency can make a big difference, especially when it comes to taking your medication.
  • Try not to avoid feared situations. It's hard to go to places or be in situations that make you uncomfortable or that bring on symptoms of anxiety. But practicing going to more and more places can make them less frightening and anxiety provoking. Family, friends and your therapist can help you work on this.
  • Learn calming skills. Working with your health care professional, you can learn how to calm and soothe yourself. You can practice these skills on your own, especially at the first hint of anxiety.
  • Practice relaxation techniques. Meditation, yoga and imagery are simple relaxation techniques that may help — and you can do them in the comfort of your own home. Practice these techniques when you aren't anxious or worried, and then put them into action during stressful situations.
  • Avoid alcohol and illegal drugs. These substances can worsen your panic or anxiety symptoms.
  • Take care of yourself. Get enough sleep, be physically active every day, and eat a healthy diet, including lots of vegetables and fruits.
May. 02, 2014

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