systematic desensitization

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Related to systematic desensitization: aversion therapy

sys·te·mat·ic de·sen·si·tiz·a·tion

a type of behavior therapy for eliminating phobias or anxieties: the patient and therapist construct a list of imagined scenes eliciting the phobia, ranked from least to most anxiety producing; the patient is then trained in deep muscle relaxation and repeatedly asked to imagine himself or herself in the presence of the least anxiety-producing scene on the list until the patient feels fully relaxed while doing so; the procedure is repeated for each scene on the list until the patient develops the capacity to feel relaxed with any of the anxiety-producing scenes; real life scenes are then substituted for the imagined scenes.
Synonym(s): reciprocal inhibition (2)

systematic desensitization

Desensitization, exposure therapy Psychology A type of behavioral intervention for managing anxiety, phobic disorders and anticipatory side effects–eg, nausea associated with chemotherapy. See Anticipatory side effects, Aversion therapy, Behavioral therapy, Encounter group therapy, Flooding, Imaging aversion therapy, Relaxing imagery. Cf Attentional distraction, Reciprocal inhibition, Relaxation training.

systematic desensitization (sisˈ·t·maˑ·tik dēˈ·senˈ·si·ti·zāˑ·shn),

n 1., the gradual eradication of a patient's phobias, which sometimes involves the introduction of coping mechanisms and can be accelerated with the use of hypnosis.
2., stimulation of the immune system and reduction in allergic response through exposure to steadily increasing doses of substance to which the patient is allergic.

sys·te·mat·ic de·sen·si·ti·za·tion

(sistĕ-matik dē-sensi-tī-zāshŭn)
Behavior therapy for eliminating phobias or anxieties.
References in periodicals archive ?
Systematic desensitization, cognitive coping, and biofeedback in the reduction of test anxiety.
By helping clients to respond differently at an unconscious and automatic level in those moments through the use of such in vivo approaches as systematic desensitization, practitioners can build success experiences and thus start a causative chain reaction of providing tangible evidence for client change.
In addition to the systematic desensitization, family counseling was also provided to the family members, teachers and friends.
While systematic desensitization (in combination with cognitive restructuring) is generally considered to be the first line treatment for phobias, therapies such as supportive psychotherapy and psychoanalytic psychotherapy can be useful alternative approaches, depending on the preferences of the patient and the therapist.
Systematic desensitization is a process designed to gradually enable phobic individuals, through the use of photographs, videos, and their imaginations, to experience less intense emotional and physical anxiety symptoms when exposed to a feared object or situation.
In addition, the therapist will have the child practice audible words in progressively more difficult settings via systematic desensitization.
For example, Hudesman, Loveday and Woods (1984) reported that systematic desensitization decreased anxiety and improved grade point average.
Treatment of anxiety through systematic desensitization in therapy groups.
Regarding anxiety, tear, and phobias, they found sufficient evidence to support systematic desensitization, modeling, reinforced practice, and cognitive-behavior therapy.
Systematic desensitization uses the imagination to recall an anxiety-producing situation, and is a relaxation technique to lessen the anxiety.
This anxiety reduction could be accomplished through a number of cognitive and behavioral techniques, such as mental and emotive imagery, relaxation therapy, systematic desensitization, thought stopping, cognitive and covert modeling, cognitive restructuring, biofeedback, meditation, and neurolinguistic programming (Gilliland & James, 1983).

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