Triggers of claustrophobia

Many different situations or feelings can trigger claustrophobia. Even thinking about certain situations without exposure to them could be a trigger.

Common triggers of claustrophobia include:

  • lifts
  • tunnels
  • tube trains
  • revolving doors
  • public toilets
  • cars with central locking
  • car washes
  • shop changing rooms
  • hotel rooms with sealed windows
  • planes

If you've felt anxious during the last six months about being in a confined space or crowded place, or if you've avoided these situations for this reason, it's likely that you're affected by claustrophobia.

MRI scan anxiety

If you have claustrophobia and you need to have an MRI scan , let the staff at the hospital know before the day of your appointment.

They may be able to give you a mild sedative, or advise you to speak to your GP for a prescription.

In some cases, you may be able to attend an open or upright MRI centre, designed for people with severe MRI anxiety. However, these clinics are often only available privately.

Content supplied by the NHS Website

Medically Reviewed by a doctor on 21 Dec 2018