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urgent emetophobia advice

i have been scared of vomit for years now, I am 15 years old and starting year 11 at school so it's an important year. I have extremely severe anxiety and struggle on the daily at school, and it just so happened that on my first day back I saw someone vomit in my class and I lost it and panicked there and then, 2 days later and I've been crying at school terrified I'm going to catch a bug, washing my hands, usuifn hand sanitizer, panic attacks during lessons and having to leave due to anxiety and on top of that the vomit fear. how do I get this off my ming because it's starting to make me feel sick due to so much anxiety so then it'll go into a vicious cycle. In my lessons I don't concentrate I've just been like 'what if I get the bug, what if I'm sick on the bus, or in the classroom, or on my own' and I'm absolutely terrified. please somebody help me, this year and my grades are so important to me and I can't afford to not concentrate. please give me some advice because I am so stuck and confused :(

4 Replies

Hey, I suggest you see a psychiatrist and or a psychologist, but most importantly talk to your parents so they can help you and it wouldn't hurt to see your school guildence counselor

I wish you the best


Hi Elle2001,

I agree with nmp1. It's important to say that you are not okay to people that you can trust and can help you overcome anxiety which are really unhelpful thoughts and thought patterns.

I have learnt a thought challenging strategy to address and change anxiety. This technique involves questioning our thought(s) rather than assuming they are correct and going along with them. Challenging thinking is likely to have positive flow on effects on your mood and behavior.

The 7 Question Thought Challenge (often known as 7 Qs)

1. Is this a thought trap - an example of an unhelpful thinking pattern

2. What is the evidence - for it being true or false

3. Is there an alternative explanation - explained in some other way

4. Can I see it from a different perspective - what would a good friend say to me or me to them

5. Will this matter later - today, tomorrow, next week, next moth or year

6. What purpose does this serve - to act positively or undermining me

7. How can I best respond - what is a more balanced thought and how can I act in a more helpful way?

The way to take the challenge is write the thought at the top of the page and then the 7 Qs and your answers.

You might like to try meditation or yoga from YouTube downloads to relax or just walk around the block to reduce stress.


I had the same fear for years until I got really sick and the only way to get better was to vomit. I still cringe at the sound, sight, smell but it’s easier to accept if it happens to me. Remember that vomiting is simply your body trying to get rid of everything making you sick inside, and you feel 10x better once it’s over. If you panic a lot it’s good to be prepared, find things that comfort you, distract yourself with a movie or a tv show, carry a paper bag in your backpack, it doesn’t have to be for you it could be for let’s say the person next to you feeling ill on the bus. Also mints and chewing gum help, the refreshing taste of it helps take your mind off how gross vomit is


Hi you are not alone this is quite common. You do need some counselling, cbt or hypnotherapy to understand it. Unfortunately bugs and sickness are common and it's all normal. You need to accept that there will be times you are ill but it does not happen very often you can't always avoid it. I struggled with a sick phobia as a child and grew out of it - last year my daughter who is now 4 had her first proper sick bug and I struggled initially but by getting on and dealing with it it may be better prepared and stronger dealing with it the next time - it's called exposure therapy - the more you deal with the phobia itself the less of a phobia it is. Please get some support and help this can only be distracting you from living your teenage years and doing well at school xx


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