EMETOPHOBIA | Overcome your fear | Regain control


What is Emetophobia?

Emetophobia is the fear of either being sick or of others being sick. It’s known by many different names, including specific phobia of vomiting (SPOV), vomit phobia, sickness phobia and fear of vomiting. It’s also associated with other fears and disorders such as phagophobia (the fear of gagging, swallowing or chocking), fear of pregnancy, social anxiety and obsessive disorders.

Who does it affect?

Emetophobia’s severity can be measured on a spectrum, ranging from a relatively mild fear of vomiting/nausea through to a severe and debilitating phobia. Research suggests that the fear of being sick affects between 0.1 to 8.8% of the population, meaning there are up to 5.5 million sufferers in the UK alone. Unlike the majority of phobias which typically see a 50:50 spilt between the genders, emetophobia predominantly effects women, who account for at least 85% of all sufferers.

How does it affect your life? 

Despite its high prevalence, many “emetophobes” believe that they are the only person experiencing these fears, leaving them feeling alone, scared and powerless. Their isolation is exacerbated by the fact that they often keep their phobia secret, not even telling their closest friends or family. Even the medical profession has little understanding of the condition.

Emetophobia can have a profound effect, impacting on their ability to lead a normal happy life. Sufferers spend a lot of time worrying about – and go to great lengths to avoid – situations they find intolerable, such as where they run the risk of either getting ill themselves or being exposed to others vomiting. Emetophobes typically lead very restricted lives and may employ avoidance techniques such as:

  • Drinking very little or no alcohol and avoiding situations where others may be drinking.
  • Worrying excessively about hygiene.
  • Only eating food that they’ve prepared themselves.
  • Avoiding public transport and public toilets.
  • Remaining childless as the fear of morning sickness is too great.
  • Some may even refuse chemotherapy.
What is “Cure Your Emetophobia and Thrive”?

“Cure Your Emetophobia and Thrive” is based on the highly successful Thrive Programme and has been specifically written to help people overcome emetophobia. It’s a unique, highly effective, evidence-based psychological training programme that equips people with all the psychological skills, resources and attitude they need to take control, conquer their phobia and flourish in every area of their lives.

Rob Kelly, author and creator of the Thrive Programme instigated the first National Emetophobia Awareness Day in March 2014.  Watch Rob’s full presentation below: 

How can the Thrive Programme help people overcome emetophobia?

In order to overcome your phobia, you need to know how you created it in the first place. You need to really understand how your beliefs and unhelpful thinking styles are causing and maintaining your fear, which is why most other therapies and interventions are unsuccessful. Only by identifying and changing your unhelpful belief systems and thinking styles will you safely, slowly and gently overcome your fear.

The Thrive Programme’s approach is unique. It’ll help you to develop the necessary self-insight and skills you need to make lasting changes to your beliefs and thinking – only then will you permanently overcome your emetophobia.

How successful is The Thrive Programme in overcoming emetophobia?

A recent research survey was conducted on the efficacy of the Thrive Programme in helping people to overcome emetophobia. The results show the programme to be a highly effective treatment, with all participants either totally overcoming or significantly improving their condition. This study is the largest piece of research ever conducted on emetophobia. View the research paper here.

If you would like to find out more about how I can help you to complete the Thrive Programme please CONTACT ME to arrange a FREE, confidential, initial consultation.

You may also like to take a look at some video testimonials to see how other people have overcome their emetophobia and in doing so, learned to truly Thrive.