Occupational Therapy for Phobias

Our specialist mental health occupational therapists provide therapy online for people with phobias. 

We are a registered NDIS provider and use an inclusive approach to therapy, where the person can be in the comfort and familiarity of their own home.

How can occupational therapy benefit people with phobias?

A mental health occupational therapist is different from a psychologist or psychiatrist. Mental health occupational therapists look at how your condition affects the functional aspects of your life and work with you on ways to improve this.

Occupational therapy can benefit people with phobias in several ways:

1. Education and understanding: Occupational therapists can provide education about phobias, their causes, and potential triggers. They help individuals understand the physiological and psychological aspects of their phobias, which can help reduce anxiety and increase coping mechanisms.

2. Exposure therapy: Occupational therapists can utilize exposure therapy techniques to gradually expose individuals to their fear or phobia in a controlled and safe environment. This gradual exposure helps individuals develop confidence and decrease anxiety associated with the phobia.

3. Relaxation techniques: Occupational therapists teach individuals various relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation, and meditation, to help them manage their anxiety and stress levels when confronted with their phobia.

4. Activity analysis and modification: Occupational therapists analyze the activities that individuals with phobias may avoid due to fear or anxiety. They then help modify those activities to make them more manageable and less overwhelming. This can involve breaking down activities into smaller, achievable steps to build confidence and gradually increase tolerance.

5. Cognitive restructuring: Occupational therapists work with individuals to identify and challenge negative thoughts and beliefs associated with their phobia. By replacing irrational thoughts with more rational, positive ones, individuals can alter their perception of the phobia and reduce anxiety.

6. Development of coping strategies: Occupational therapists help individuals develop effective coping strategies to manage their phobias in daily life. These strategies may include self-soothing techniques, use of sensory tools, establishing a routine, and identifying a support system.

7. Social skills development: Occupational therapists facilitate the development of social skills and interactions related to managing phobias. They help individuals communicate their needs, educate others about their fears, and seek support from those around them.

Overall, occupational therapy helps individuals with phobias by providing them with the skills, tools, and support needed to overcome their fears, increase independence, and improve their overall quality of life.

Occupational therapy assessments for phobias

We are able to provide many types of occupational therapy assessments online, including Functional Capacity Assessments (FCA) and reports required for the NDIS. Please see this article for more information on assessments we can provide.

NDIS registered provider

We are a registered NDIS provider and work with self-managed, plan-managed and agency-managed clients. 


If your are an NDIS provider or support coordinator we can provide reliable occupational therapy for clients with phobias in any location. Refer a client and we’ll connect you to the right clinician. 

Is online occupational therapy effective?

Yes! A growing body of evidence shows that online delivery of therapy can be as effective as face to face. Online therapy has many other benefits too, including being convenient and accessible for people in regional and rural areas.  

How does online occupational therapy work?

At Umbo online therapy is not just zoom plus business-as-usual. It’s much more diverse than simply videoconferencing. Umbo therapists provide an individualised approach to each person, using the latest evidence, and a variety of technologies and engagement techniques.

Umbo champions person-centred therapy. It means the person and their family/support people leads the conversation. We believe that the most effective therapy occurs when support is given in the environment where the person lives, learns, works or plays. Therefore we work with the family, and teach skills to you or to other supporters. This means you’re achieving real-life goals, rather than just achieving goals in a clinic.

We are a certified social enterprise helping Australian families access allied health services.