Exposure therapy is a type of therapy that helps people overcome things, activities, or situations that cause fear or anxiety. It’s used by therapists and psychologists to help treat conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PSTD) and phobias.
People have a tendency to avoid things and situations they’re afraid of. According to the American Psychological Association, the idea behind exposure therapy is exposing people to stimuli that cause distress in a safe environment helps them decrease avoidance and overcome their fear.
In this article, we break down everything you need to know about exposure therapy, including what it’s used to treat, how it works, and what the research says about its effectiveness.