A phobia, a type of anxiety disorder, is usually defined as a persistent fear of an object or situation in which the sufferer commits to great lengths in avoiding, typically disproportional to the actual danger posed, often being recognized as irrational.
There are many types of phobias and the list is very long almost 100 plus. However, phobias are treatable with cognitive and behavioral therapy techniques.
Here are some phobias that most people suffer from:
Ophidiophobia: Fear of snakes
Different people suffering from Ophidiophobia react differently, because each person has his or her own way of thinking and perceiving images, movements, and sounds connected with snakes.
Symptoms can be psychological; for instance, obsessive thinking about snakes or the dangers caused by snakes. This may then cause fainting, loss of control, emotional anxiety, continuous fear, or desire to run away. The anxiety and fear can even lead to a panic attack.
Cynophobia: Fear of dogs
Persons suffering from Cynophobia will do their best to avoid approaching or passing by a dog to the extent that they may stay at home to avoid dogs, because they are convinced that there is a possibility of harm. Some of them might just fear from a certain breed of dogs, so the fear factor related to Cynophobia varies.
Common symptoms include running away, freezing in terror, attempting to hide or crying. This phobia is often associated with specific personal experiences, such as being bitten by a dog during childhood.
Arachnophobia: Fear of spiders
People with arachnophobia feel uncomfortable at any place or any time, if they feel the presence of a spider, see a realistic picture or even just a sign of its web. Just the notion of a spider is enough to cause fear.
Symptoms include crying, screaming, breathlessness or excessive sweating. People suffering from this phobia, are perpetually paranoid that every room they enter will have spiders. Arachnophobia usually affects women more rather than men.
This is more like the fear of cockroaches called Katsaridaphobia. It may be possible that individuals fear the potential of disease or filth with cockroaches, but more likely it is simply the fear of insects in general which is called Entomophobia.
Acrophobia: Fear of heights
Many of us are terrified when exposed to heights, and also when there is little or no protection. But in extreme cases, a person may suffer from Acrophobia – a very strong fear of heights. Acrophobics can suffer from panic attacks when they are placed on heights, and may get very restless if not relieved immediately. This fear can lead to anxiety attacks and avoidance of high places.
Agoraphobia: The fear of situations in which escape is difficult
In some cases, this relates to a fear of ‘open spaces.’ This fear can take place anywhere; at home, in places of worship, crowded malls, etc. Usually this phobia deepens when a person starts avoiding spaces or situations like driving, shopping, crowded places, and traveling – essentially all spaces that he or she perceives to be part of his/her phobia.
Agoraphobia arises from an internal anxiety condition that becomes so intense that the suffering individual fears going anywhere, especially to places where these feelings of panic originated. Once these panic attacks have started, they are followed by ongoing stress, even when other obvious symptoms diminish.
Astraphobia: Fear of thunder and lightening
Astraphobiacs will often feel worried during thunderstorms.
Symptoms include crying, sweating, panic attacks, wanting to use the restroom, and nausea. Their case usually worsens when they are all alone; they will look for extra shelter, might hide underneath a bed where they feel that they are safe or might cover their ears so that the sound of the thunder is reduced.
Trypanophobia: Fear of injections
It is common to have a little discomfort while getting injections, but Trypanophobics fear injections or needles to the extent that they may completely avoid medical treatment.
Symptoms of Trypanophobia, include feelings of dread or panic, rapid heartbeat, trembling and extreme avoidance.
Pteromerhanophobia: Fear of flying
There are many who fear flying. The fear arises with the thought that the aircraft in which they are travelling will crash and they will die in the ensuing disaster. The fear of death and getting trapped in a place where it is almost impossible to get any help, makes the sufferer very uncomfortable.
Symptoms include breaking out into cold sweat and breathlessness.