Learning Center Articles

Phobias

Phobias

Agoraphobia

  • Fear of being vulnerable in places or situations from which escape might be difficult or in which help might not be available in the event of panic-like symptoms or other incapacitating symptoms.
    • Traveling in public transportation
    • Being in open spaces
    • Being in shops, theaters, or cinemas
    • Standing in line or being in a crowd
    • Being outside of the home alone in other situations

Social anxiety disorder (social phobia)

  • Excessive fear of situations in which the affected person might do something embarrassing or be evaluated negatively by others
  • Exposure to the phobic situation usually results in feelings of panic anxiety with sweating, tachycardia, and dyspnea.
  • It appears to be more common in women than in men.

Specific phobia

  • Fear of specific objects or situations that could conceivably cause harm, but the person’s reaction to them is excessive, unreasonable, and inappropriate
  • Exposure to the phobic object produces overwhelming symptoms of panic, including palpitations, sweating, dizziness, and difficulty breathing
  • After a period of time, the person recognizes that their fear is excessive or unreasonable but is powerless to change, even though they occasionally endure the phobic stimulus when experiencing intense anxiety.

Type specifiers

  • Animal
  • Natural environment type
  • Blood-injection-injury type
  • Situational type
  • Other type

Predisposing factors to phobias

Psychoanalytical theory

  • Unconscious fears may be expressed in a symbolic manner as phobia.

Learning theory

  • Fears are conditioned responses and thus are learned by imposing reinforcements for certain behaviors.

Cognitive theory

  • Anxiety is the product of faulty cognitions or anxiety-inducing self-instructions.
    • Negative self-statements
    • Irrational beliefs
  • The individual begins to seek out avoidance behaviors to prevent the anxiety reaction, and phobias results.
  • Types of phobia

Classifications

Fear

Classifications

Fear

Acrophobia

Height

Mysophobia

Dirt, germs, contamination

Ailurophobia

Cats

Numerophobia

Numbers

Algophobia

Pain

Nyctophobia

Darkness

Anthophobia

Flowers

Ochophobia

Riding in a car

Anthropophobia

People

Ophidiophobia

Snakes

Aquaphobia

Water

Pyrophobia

Fire

Arachnophobia

Spiders

Scoleciphobia

Worms

Astraphobia

Lightning

Siderodromophobia

Railroads or train travel

Belonephobia

Needles

Taphophobia

Being buried alive

Brontophobia

Thunder

Thanatophobia

Death

Claustrophobia

Closed spaces

Trichophobia

Hair

Cynophobia

Dogs

Triskaidekaphobia

The number 13

Dementophobia

Insanity

Xenophobia

Strangers

Equinophobia

Horses

Zoophobia

Animals

Gamophobia

Marriage

Herpetophobia

Lizards, reptiles

Homophobia

Homosexuality

Murophobia

Mice