Questions on Online Therapy’s self-assessment for agoraphobia ask the test-taker about his propensity for panic attacks, avoidance of crowds or situations that remind him of previous panic attacks, and feelings of loss of control. Agoraphobics have irrational fears of open or public spaces, according to Online Therapy.
Online Therapy’s self-quiz for agoraphobics also asks about the test-taker’s fear of escaping from certain situations and feelings of losing mental competence if he cannot leave the situation. In addition, the quiz asks if the test-taker fears having a heart attack during the midst of a panic attack. Some agoraphobics have such intense fears about being in public that they are unable to leave their homes, notes Online Therapy.
The American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM-5, requires agoraphobics to meet two or more criteria for diagnoses of agoraphobia, notes Mayo Clinic. These include anxiety or fear about using public transportation; fear of being in open spaces such as bridges, malls and parking lots; fear of being in a meeting room, small store, movie theatre or other enclosed space; anxiety about being in a crowd or waiting in line; and fear of being out of the home alone.
Other criteria include the person’s need of a companion to go with him to places that cause anxiety and the presence of fear or anxiety in social situations, suggests Mayo Clinic. The fear or avoidance should persist for six months or longer for a clinical diagnosis of agoraphobia.