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First Steps To Freedom

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Locations
First Steps To Freedom
PO Box 476
Newquay, CON TR7 1WQ
United Kingdom
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Phone
0845 841 0619
Contact
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Website
http://www.first-steps.org/



Image - First Steps To Freedom

Established in 1991, First Steps To Freedom is the oldest registered national charity in the UK running a helpline for anxiety sufferers. First Steps is currently the only totally voluntary Quality Standard assured charity, providing a helpline for anxiety sufferers every day of the year and accredited by the Mental Health Helplines Partnership.

First Steps to Freedom is a U.K. registered charity which aims to help, in a practical way, those who suffer from phobias, obsessive compulsive disorder (excessive washing, checking, unwanted thoughts etc.), general anxiety, panic attacks and those who wish to come off tranquillisers, together with help for their carers.

Anxiety disorders and phobias

Sufferers from anxiety learn to avoid situations which bring on nightmarish feelings - jelly legs, churning stomach, sweaty hands, shallow breathing and the thought that they may have a heart attack, or somehow make a fool of themselves. Phobias can worsen quickly as the person becomes over sensitised to the "trigger".

Agoraphobics, for example, find ordinary activities such as going to the local shops, queuing in the local supermarket, or travelling on public transport, very difficult, sometimes impossible. There is always a need to "escape" from the place or thing that they fear, a need to run to somewhere "safe"

The problem is, that by running from the frightening situation the sufferer remains phobic, and so they become a prisoner of their own fear. Agoraphobia is not the only phobia, although it is one of the most common. There are specific phobias, such as the fear of spiders, hospitals, dentists, birds, wind etc. Some people are even unable to look at a drawing of the thing that they fear. There are also social phobics which means people who are afraid of being the centre of attention, perhaps with the fear of blushing, or for some other reason. They may find it very difficult to go for a drink in a pub, out for a meal, or go to the cinema or the theatre. Some are unable to use a public toilet.

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