‘Virtual reality cured my fear of heights’

Fay Nugent developed a fear of heights in her 30s.
“It began after I went on a girls’ weekend away,” she says.
“We had gone on an adventure activity called a tree-top walk.
“I managed to climb up to do it – but then when it came to stepping out on to the high ropes, I just couldn’t do it.
“I felt physically ill and panicked, even though I knew I was perfectly safe.”
Her phobia got worse over the next few years, to the point that it stopped her doing everyday things.
“I went to a concert at Wembley to see Take That,” she says.
“It’s a massive venue and our seats were at the back, high up.
“I tried to go up there to take my seat – but all of a sudden I had this feeling of utter panic.
“It was a bit like in the cartoons when the character’s eyeballs go out on strings.”
Fay, now 48, started avoiding fearful situations, which, for her, included riding escalators.
“It was the downward ones that worried me the most,” she says.
“It wasn’t so much that I was worried about tripping, I was scared of being up high and the sensation of getting pulled downwards.”

Source: BBC

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