Howie Mandel’s phobia of germs is well documented, but can the star be cured of his fears in just an hour? The comedian, author and television personality joins The Doctors to find out if he can put his fears behind him.
“This is a battle that I fight every waking moment of my life,” he shares, explaining that his phobias are symptomatic of his obsessive compulsive disorder. “The thought of germs triggers me and germs on my hands.”
He tells The Doctors he’s sought help with psychologists and tried medication. His phobias come out when he meets or greets someone, explaining that he doesn’t understand why we need to shake hands to say hello. He prefers a fist bump over a handshake.
We brought in the help from personal growth expert and life strategist Gary Coxe who explains that phobias are usually created after someone has a dramatic or traumatic life experience and then it is replayed over and over.
The “America’s Got Talent” judge shares when he was 7 years old, he was bitten by a sand fly and the insect laid it’s larvae under his skin and he was traumatized seeing the eggs hatch and crawl out from under his flesh.
Gary explains the key to a fear is about changing your thought process, which will lead to a change in behavior. So how might Howie change his thought process regarding germs? Gary says it would involve the star changing his story, which will change his results.
“I’m convinced I could lose my fear of germs, I believe that. But my OCD will find another thing. I think it’s really important for me to identify that, for me to own that, for me to take care of that. There’s no stigma involved,” Howie tells The Doctors.
Find out more about the next steps Howie is willing to take about facing his fears in the video below.