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Desensitization is a process used in psychology to help individuals reduce their emotional response to a particular stimulus. The process involves gradually exposing the individual to the stimulus, either through physical exposure or through visualization techniques, with the goal of reducing the intensity of their emotional response. Desensitization is commonly used in the treatment of anxiety disorders, phobias, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

History of Desensitization

  • The concept of desensitization can be traced back to the early 20th century when psychologists began studying classical conditioning. The idea was that if an individual could be exposed to a particular stimulus repeatedly, they would eventually stop responding to it. This led to the development of various techniques for desensitizing individuals to stimuli such as fear and anxiety.
  • One of the earliest forms of desensitization was systematic desensitization, developed by Joseph Wolpe in the 1950s. This technique involved gradually exposing individuals to their fears, starting with the least anxiety-provoking stimuli and gradually progressing to more intense stimuli. The goal was to help individuals learn to manage their anxiety and reduce their fear response.

Techniques for Desensitization

Applications of Desensitization

Also see

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