We all felt fear. It is an emotion that we encounter, especially in situations that we think are unsafe or unsure. However, sometimes it becomes irrational and excessive to the point that it affects our normal daily function. It goes along with the intense avoidance and worry that make us no longer want to engage in new things. This type of fear disrupts our everyday life making us unable to make better decisions, think clearly, and analyze problems. And that extreme negative association with fear where there’s too much anxiety, stress, panic, and emotional disposition is what we call phobia.
So let’s carry on our courageous march towards learning more about the common specific phobias.
This type of phobia affects six percent of individuals globally and is a common condition that people suffer from until adulthood. It is known as the fear of heights that many of us have. Studies show that acrophobia can result from an evolutionary situational adaptation. Though it might be added to the list of phobias that can cause mental and emotional debilitation, it sure helps prevent us from taking unnecessary risks.
However, when this phobia gets out of hand, it could lead to extreme life difficulty. Unfortunately, it can make us dislike typical structures such as buildings, towers, bridges, steep staircases, etc. It can make us fear and avoid other high places because of the possible trigger of panic attacks.
The fear of injections has been long accepted by society as a children’s common fear. However, the condition that somehow holds onto adulthood is not likely deemed as normal. Trypanophobia causes an extremely uncomfortable feeling that makes us want to avoid medical treatments as much as possible. Unfortunately, this is extremely risky to an extent because some treatments will require hospitalizations and possibly surgeries.
The fear of injection can be so intense that people might faint just by seeing a needle or something sharp and pointy. Unfortunately, the majority of people do not believe that this phobia can persist. There is little awareness spread about the condition that is why many are not taking this phobia seriously. It makes people even more uninterested in the condition since exposure therapy is the only way to get rid of it. Ironically, that can be hard to deal with.
We all know this as the eight-legged nightmare. It is usually the most common of all phobias, which is known as the fear of spiders. Each year, studies and surveys say that almost 300 to 400 million people are affected by this type of phobia. That gives us a huge percentage of the global population. Along with that data, it is known that women are twice as likely to develop this type of condition compared to men.
Nevertheless, the reason behind this fear can be traced back to the older days where people were afraid of unusual appearances. Thus, they viewed spiders as frightening creatures that could cause a potential threat to their livelihood. They believe that spiders are hazardous and can cause water and food contaminations. To treat this condition, some professional experts use cognitive behavioral therapy along with medication. But we should expect this to require numerous sessions.
Perhaps we are thinking the same thing. We couldn’t get to different places in a short period without airplanes. However, not everyone is fond of flying. Aerophobia refers to the fear of flying on a plane. It affects more than 40 percent of adults. This type of condition is logically irrational. When we think about it, plane accidents are so rare compared to traveling by car.
Nonetheless, individuals suffering from this type of phobia always avoid flights as much as they can. Though it can be manageable, it can be problematic when work is required. It might also cause misunderstanding when it gets required for a long-distance relationship. Luckily, a prescribed anti-anxiety medication helps manage symptoms before and during a flight.
Mysophia or also known as Germophobia is a type of phobia shared by many. It refers to the fear of germs, contamination, uncleanliness, and infection. This one’s a bit acceptable since there are potential reasons to be afraid of germs. This type of phobia can manifest through certain behaviors such as compulsive hand washing, excessive cleaning, overly sanitizing, and extremely avoiding germs and bacteria. People with Mysophobia are constantly wearing a face mask, gloves, and other protective germ-blocking suits.
In some extreme cases, this condition can disrupt our lives as it makes us isolate ourselves from the outside world due to the fear of being contaminated by certain diseases caused by germs. It may sound overblown, but the condition tends to worsen over time. It may cause risk factors of developing other conditions, including brain damage.