Implosive therapy

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Definition

noun

A form of behavior therapy in which it utilizes a method for extinguishing anxiety through saturation exposure to the feared stimulus situation or its substrate


Supplement

Implosive therapy is a behavior therapy for individuals with anxiety problems and helping them to respond to future anxiety-producing situations rather appropriately. This therapy is carried out by recollecting and reviewing unpleasant, anxiety-producing scenes, often in order of increasing anxiety. This therefore would involve strong emotional reactions of the client. The therapy entails few treatment sessions until such time that the anxiety of the client is assessed to have disappeared.

Implosive therapy is a therapy based on the principles of classical conditioning. Classical conditioning is a process that results in the learning of a new behavior that is achieved through the process of association, i.e. by repeated pairings of the neutral stimulus and the biological stimulus. Implosive therapy makes use of this principle in order to eliminate or replace a behavior, particularly the emotional responses of fear and anxiety. This therapy has been used to treat phobias1


Synonym(s):

  • flooding therapy

See also:

Reference(s):
1 Spielberger, C. (2004). Encyclopedia of applied psychology. Oxford Boston: Elsevier Academic Press.