WHILE it may raise a chuckle for those lucky people who are not bothered by the sight of an eight-legged creepy-crawlie, today’s story about the treatment of anxiety has major implications for the treatment of mental health problems.

Researchers hope to show a pill, along with talking therapy, can quickly help people terrified of spiders overcome their fear.

Already, NHS talking therapies have played a major role in helping thousands of people learn to cope with anxiety and lead more productive lives.

The prospect of a pill speeding up this process has major implications for residents’ well-being but also costs to the under-pressure health service.