How To Get Over Fear Of Snakes?

  • By: Vlad Ivanov
  • Date: May 24, 2023
  • Time to read: 13 min.

Are you afraid of snakes? You are not alone! Many people have a fear of snakes but don’t know how to overcome it. In this article, you’ll discover the steps you can take to help you overcome your fear. So, if you’re ready to face your fear of snakes, let’s get started!

Understanding Fear of Snakes

Understanding Fear of Snakes-How To Get Over Fear Of Snakes?,

Photo Credits: by Jason Baker

Cope with your fear of snakes? Let’s explore it! Causes, symptoms, effects – these must be acknowledged. Identify them and you can conquer your fear. Then, peacefully coexist with these creatures.

Causes of Fear of Snakes

The origins of Ophidiophobia can be traced back to our evolutionary past. Innate fear of snakes is embedded in the human genome and triggered by their S-shaped movement and slit pupils. Additionally, media representation of snakes as dangerous and evil animals also adds to the fear.

Exposure Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Virtual Reality Therapy and Meditative Techniques can help overcome fear of snakes. Exposure therapy allows for gradual exposure to the phobia-stimulus under safe conditions, leading to desensitization. CBT teaches coping mechanisms by raising awareness about the thoughts and feelings triggered by snakes. VR therapy creates a realistic environment that helps people confront their fears safely. Meditation may improve mindfulness, lower anxiety levels, and enhance control over automatic responses linked with phobias.

It’s important to remember that everyone’s response to treatment is unique and personalized approaches are essential in dealing with phobias. Feeling the need to climb Mount Everest just to escape a snake? Yup, that’s a symptom alright.

Symptoms of Fear of Snakes

Fear of encountering snakes is a common phobia among people. This dread arises from an unnecessary and irrational fear of snakes, often leading to panic even at the mere sight or sound of them.

Symptoms of this type of phobia may include:

  • Immediate and intense fear response at the possibility or sight of snakes.
  • Avoidance behaviour with a heightened sense of anxiety and distress when confronting any possible snake environment.
  • Intrusive thoughts and worry about encountering snakes, which may lead to physical symptoms such as sweating, increased heart rate, shaky hands, etc.

It is essential to understand that these symptoms can have a severe impact on daily life. Consequently, many individuals tend to avoid outdoor activities or places where the possibility of coming across a snake is high.

Furthermore, it is crucial to note that not all individuals with herpetophobia or ophidiophobia display such symptoms. However, suppose this unnecessary fear interferes with regular functioning, leading to persistent anxiety and avoidance behaviour. In that case, it might be worthwhile seeking professional help.

History tells us that human beings have feared snakes for centuries due to their poisonous abilities and potential danger. The serpent remains an iconic symbol in various cultures worldwide today. It’s hard to enjoy a hike when you’re constantly scanning the ground for danger noodles.

Effects of Fear of Snakes

The apprehension of snakes can induce various consequences on a person’s mind and behavior. Such phobias result in physiological and psychological responses, including nausea, anxiety, and sweating. These reactions can trigger an evolutionarily ingrained fear response in humans, causing anticipatory avoidance behaviors towards snakes.

Furthermore, the fear of snakes can result in severe panic attacks that affect day-to-day activities. Research suggests that it can also lead to a restricted outdoor experience, especially in areas where snakes are prevalent. In extreme cases, individuals with ophidiophobia may undergo long-term effects on their mental health, such as depression and increased stress levels.

It is crucial to understand that the fear of snakes is widespread but requires gradual desensitization techniques to cope with such fears effectively. Exposure therapy and relaxation techniques are practical methods to overcome this fear and reduce significant symptoms related to phobia.

Pro Tip: Seeking professional guidance from a therapist or counselor experienced in treating specific phobias is essential for effective recovery.

Ready to face your fear of snakes? Just remember, they’re more afraid of you than you are of them…unless you’re a mouse.

How to Get Over Fear of Snakes?

How to Get Over Fear of Snakes?-How To Get Over Fear Of Snakes?,

Photo Credits: by Jacob Sanchez

Your fear of snakes can be conquered! There are several approaches to try.

Exposure therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, relaxation techniques, hypnotherapy, medications, and self-help strategies are all options. We’ll briefly introduce these one by one, so you can beat your snake phobia.

Exposure Therapy

One method for overcoming a fear of snakes involves gradually exposing oneself to snakes in a controlled environment. This approach is known as desensitization therapy and can reduce the intensity of one’s fear response over time.

During exposure therapy, individuals work with a therapist who introduces them to snakes in a gradual and controlled manner. For example, the individual may start by looking at pictures of snakes, then watching videos of snakes, before eventually progressing to being in close proximity to live snakes. Through repeated exposure to the feared object, an individual can learn to manage their fear response and become less fearful overall.

It’s important to note that exposure therapy should only be done under the guidance of a trained professional. Additionally, seeking out information about the specific species of snake that causes fear can help alleviate concerns and increase knowledge about these creatures.

One woman who successfully overcame her fear of snakes through exposure therapy recounted how she initially struggled with even thinking about snakes without experiencing intense anxiety. However, through gradually confronting her fears and learning more about these animals, she was eventually able to hold a snake with ease.

Cognitive behavioral therapy: because sometimes you need a professional to help you untangle the snakes in your head.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Individuals with a fear of snakes can opt for a type of mental health treatment called behavioral therapy. Behavioral therapy is a form of psychotherapy that focuses on modifying negative behaviors and thoughts associated with phobias. Through cognitive restructuring, exposure therapy, and relaxation techniques, individuals can overcome their fear of snakes in a controlled environment. By addressing the underlying beliefs and emotions related to the fear, patients can learn alternative thought patterns and coping mechanisms, leading to long-term results.

In addition to traditional behavioral therapy methods, virtual reality exposure therapy (VRET) has also shown effectiveness in treating snake phobia. VRET allows patients to experience simulated situations involving snakes through avatars or 3D models in a safe and controlled setting. This method encourages desensitization towards snakes by gradually increasing exposures at the patient’s own pace.

It is important to note that while behavioral therapy has proven successful in treating snake-related fears, it may not work for everyone. It is crucial to seek professional help from licensed therapists specialized in fear-based disorders.

Pro Tip: It is vital to practice ongoing self-care strategies such as regular exercise, meditation and monitoring negative self-talk after undergoing treatment to ensure long-term success in overcoming the fear of snakes.

Calming your nerves around snakes is like trying to relax at a Taylor Swift concert – just breathe and try not to scream.

Relaxation Techniques

Techniques for Calming Down Your Nerves

To overcome the fear of snakes, one of the most effective ways is to practice relaxation techniques. Deep breathing, visualization, and progressive muscle relaxation are great options. Deep breathing involves taking slow, deep breaths and exhaling slowly to reduce tension. Visualization involves picturing yourself in a safe place or thinking of happy thoughts. Progressive muscle relaxation includes tensing and releasing muscles throughout your body sequentially.

Another effective option is meditation. Meditate consistently for at least 5-10 minutes daily to help calm your mind and body. It reduces stress hormones and promotes positive thinking patterns.

Apart from these, physical exercises such as yoga can also be helpful in reducing anxiety levels and calming your nerves.

Pro Tip: Focusing on a particular sound or object can also aid in relaxation as it helps divert attention from fearful thoughts.

I tried hypnotherapy for my fear of snakes, but all I got was a strong urge to hiss and slither.


Using subconscious mind manipulation, a therapeutic technique known as hypnosis can help alleviate the fear of snakes. This method involves inducing a trance-like state in individuals to reduce anxiety and plant positive suggestions. During hypnotherapy, practitioners guide clients through progressive relaxation and guided imagery exercises to change the way they perceive snakes and alleviate their fear.

Hypnotherapy can be an effective treatment for those with a phobia of snakes. It enables patients to access repressed emotions or memories that might have contributed to the development of their fear. By using powerful language patterns, therapists can suggest how the patients should respond when they encounter snakes. The objective is to modify one’s subconscious perception of these reptiles without actually being physically present around them.

A valuable tip to consider during hypnotherapy is ensuring that you choose a certified and experienced therapist who has expertise in treating specific phobias like ophidiophobia (the irrational fear of snakes). They will use various approaches tailored to individual needs and ensure you achieve effective results without unwanted side effects.

Don’t like snakes? There’s a pill for that, but it might just turn you into a snake lover instead.


For individuals who are struggling with ophidiophobia, there are various pharmacological treatments available to alleviate symptoms associated with the fear of snakes. Anti-anxiety medications such as Benzodiazepines may be prescribed to help manage anxiety symptoms. Beta-blockers like Propranolol, which decrease heart rate and blood pressure, may also be used to reduce physical symptoms like sweating and shaking.

It is essential to note that medication alone cannot cure phobias like the fear of snakes. Psychosocial interventions like cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) are recommended for long-term management. CBT teaches individuals how to identify their irrational and negative thought patterns about snakes and challenge them effectively. Exposure therapy can gradually expose individuals to phobic stimuli in a controlled environment and teach coping strategies.

Additionally, therapists might use virtual reality exposure therapy (VRET) or even snake handling sessions, where supervised contact with harmless snakes helps reduce fear over time.

A real-life story example shows how effective such treatment can be: In one case, a severely ophidiophobic individual was able to overcome her phobia through a series of virtual reality exposures over an eight-week period. She later attended a rehabilitative wildlife encounter program where she successfully held live nonvenomous snakes without experiencing any significant anxiety symptoms.

If facing your fear of snakes doesn’t work, just remember, they’re more afraid of you than you are of them…unless you’re wearing a mouse suit.

Self-Help Strategies

Learning Techniques to Overcome Fear of Snakes

Reducing fear of snakes can be accomplished through self-help techniques. These include:

  • Gradual exposure
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Desensitization
  • Relaxation exercises
  • Mindfulness training

Identify your irrational thoughts regarding the animal and replace them with rational ones. Additionally, practicing relaxation techniques like deep breathing and visualization can be helpful. Spend time around a snake in a controlled environment to become acclimated to its presence. Use positive affirmations and visualize yourself feeling composed and relaxed while being near it.

It’s essential to remember that fear of snakes is natural, but experiencing chronic fear can be detrimental. Therefore accepting and seeking help in overcoming the phobia is not only acceptable but also necessary.

According to National Geographic, approximately 70% of snake bites occur when individuals are attempting to kill or capture them deliberately.

Better to wear snake-proof boots than to constantly worry about finding a cobra in your shoe.

Preventing Fear of Snakes

Preventing Fear of Snakes-How To Get Over Fear Of Snakes?,

Photo Credits: by Jonathan Smith

Gain knowledge to eliminate fear of snakes. Learn about different species and their behaviors. Get educated on snake safety tips. This will reduce encounters and keep you safe. If needed, seek professional help.


Expanding one’s knowledge about snakes can help alleviate the fear associated with them. Learning about snake behavior, recognizing venomous and non-venomous species, and avoiding common misconceptions can aid in overcoming snake phobia. Additionally, seeking assistance from a professional for exposure therapy could prove beneficial.

To further conquer this fear, staying calm and composed when encountering a snake is crucial. Overreacting and panicking only escalates the situation and increases fear levels. One should train their mind to practice rational thinking in such situations.

Pro Tip: Educating oneself on snake safety is imperative to avoid any unwanted encounters with these creatures. Don’t be a hiss-terical mess, follow these snake safety tips and avoid being their next meal.

Snake Safety Tips

For individuals looking to learn about snake safety, there are several ways to minimize the risk of snakebite. One way is to avoid walking through areas where snakes commonly reside, such as tall grasses or rocky terrain. Additionally, wearing appropriate footwear and clothing can help protect against potential bites.

Here are a few tips to stay safe from snakes while outdoors:

  • Stay on designated paths- By sticking to designated trails or pathways, you are less likely to encounter a snake that wasn’t prepared for your arrival.
  • Listen for warnings- Take precautions if you hear any rattling noises or hissing sounds coming from around you.
  • Move Away Slowly- If you stumble upon a snake out in the open wilderness, taking steps backward in slow motion is best in most cases instead of getting near it quickly.

It is important to note that not all snakes are dangerous and many can be beneficial for their natural environments. Understanding your surroundings and being familiar with local wildlife can help minimize fear associated with snakes.

When hiking or camping, it is recommended to inform others of your whereabouts and expected return time. Additionally, carrying a proper first aid kit including supplies specific for snakebites can be beneficial in case of an emergency.

Incorporating these simple practices into your outdoor routine can help ensure the safety of both yourself and wildlife living within the area.

Seeking Professional Help

Professional Therapy for Overcoming Ophidiophobia

Consulting a licensed therapist or psychologist could enhance the chances of overcoming ophidiophobia (fear of snakes). Cognitive-behavioral therapy, exposure therapy, and systematic desensitization are some effective treatments that a professional may offer. The therapist will work on providing strategies to recognize and challenge irrational thoughts about snakes; gradually expose patients to snake-related stimuli while teaching them techniques to cope with anxiety.

It is possible to avail other benefits from professional therapy sessions as well. Patients get an opportunity to resolve underlying psychological issues that may lead to phobias. Individuals learn new ways of dealing with fear and stress that can impact other life areas too.

Remember, every individual’s treatment plan varies depending on the severity, duration of phobia, and overall health. It’s time to seek out professional help if the fear of snakes takes over one’s well-being.

Some Facts About How To Get Over Fear Of Snakes:

  • ✅ Exposure therapy is a widely used method for overcoming fear of snakes, which involves gradually exposing the individual to snakes in a controlled and safe environment. (Source: Verywell Mind)
  • ✅ Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) can also be helpful in addressing the underlying cognitive distortions and negative thought patterns associated with fear of snakes. (Source: Psychology Today)
  • ✅ Relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing and meditation, can also aid in reducing anxiety and improving coping skills. (Source: Healthline)
  • ✅ Learning about the biology and behavior of snakes can help demystify and reduce fear of these creatures. (Source: Live Science)
  • ✅ Avoiding trigger situations or stimuli, such as images or movies featuring snakes, can actually reinforce and exacerbate fear in the long run, and is not recommended as a coping mechanism. (Source: Anxiety and Depression Association of America)

FAQs about How To Get Over Fear Of Snakes?

1. How To Get Over Fear Of Snakes?

Answer: The best way to get over your fear of snakes is through exposure therapy. This involves gradually exposing yourself to snakes in a controlled environment until your fear subsides.

2. What Are Some Techniques For Overcoming A Fear Of Snakes?

Answer: Some techniques for overcoming a fear of snakes include relaxation techniques, positive visualization, and learning more about snakes and their behavior.

3. Is it Possible to Get Over a Fear of Snakes If You’ve Had it for a Long Time?

Answer: Yes, it is possible to get over a fear of snakes even if you’ve had it for a long time. With the right techniques and persistence, anyone can overcome their fears.

4. Can Therapy Help Me Overcome My Fear of Snakes?

Answer: Yes, therapy can be effective in helping people to overcome their fear of snakes. Working with a therapist can provide you with the tools and support needed to make progress.

5. What Should I Do if I Encounter a Snake?

Answer: If you encounter a snake, the best thing to do is to remain calm and still. Give the snake plenty of space to move away, and do not attempt to touch or handle it.

6. How Can I Prevent a Fear of Snakes In My Children?

Answer: One way to prevent a fear of snakes in children is to expose them to snakes at a young age. Take them to a zoo or other controlled environment where they can see and learn about snakes in a safe setting. Teaching them about snakes and their behavior can also help to dispel any myths or misconceptions they may have.

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