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Phobias: Most Popular Articles

These articles are the most popular over the last month.
What are You Afraid of? The Top 10 Most Common...
A specific phobia is a fear of a specified object or event. Read on for information about some of the most common specific phobias.
Are You Scared of Being Abandoned?
The fear of abandonment, though not officially known as a phobia, can have far-reaching implications in our lives. The fear is complicated and difficult to unravel, but working through it can dramatically change your life.
What Does Cognitive Theory Mean in Psychology?
Definition of Cognitive Theory. Phobias.
What Is the Fear of Being Alone?
Monophobia, or the fear of being alone, takes many different forms. No matter which form you have, some basic coping strategies may help.
Is Fear of Dying Affecting Your Life?
The fear of death is ancient and primal. However, not all thanatophobia is the same. Read on for important information on the various causes and treatments for this common phobia.
Understanding the Deeper Issues with Fear of...
The fear of intimacy is heavily mixed with the fear of vulnerability, as well as the twin fears of abandonment and engulfment. People with a fear of intimacy may use distancing and other tactics to prevent relationships from becoming too close.
How to Manage Symptoms of Claustrophobia
Claustrophobia is the fear of enclosed spaces. This disorder can be quite life-limiting, leading sufferers to avoid activities from MRIs to roller coasters. Read on for information that all claustrophobia sufferers should have.
Scared of Heights? What You Should Know About...
Acrophobia is the fear of heights. It is more general than aerophobia (fear of flying), and is not the same thing as vertigo. Read on for more information on acrophobia.
Chionophobia, or the fear of snow, may be rooted in many different specific phobias. It may also occur alone.
Understanding the Fear of Buttons
The fear of buttons, or koumpounophobia, varies dramatically in its specifics. Texture issues, fear of germs and previous negative experiences may all have an effect on this phobia.
What Is Ornithophobia?
Ornithophobia, or fear of birds, is relatively common. However, the symptoms and severity can vary widely. Learn more about this interesting phobia.
What Is the Fear of Rejection?
The fear of rejection is common but insidious. Over time, a fear of rejection can escalate into additional phobias. Even milder cases may cause us to limit our activities and prevent us from reaching our goals or pursuing our dreams.
What Is Evolutionary Psychology?
Evolutionary psychology is commonly cited as a means of explaining human behavior. But what is evolutionary psychology? How does it explain behaviors, especially fears and phobias?
What Can Help You Stop Being Scared of the Dark
Fear of the dark is common in children, and often passes as they mature. If it persists for more than six months, fear of the dark should be professionally treated, as it can become crippling in older children and adults. Read on for more information on this common phobia.
Understanding Your Fear of Elevators
Although accidents are rare, the fear of elevators is pervasive. Why are we so afraid, and how can we fight our elevator phobias?
Erotophobia, or the fear of sex, includes many different phobias. Some people fear all forms of sexual expression, others only intercourse. Some are afraid of all touch, others of intimacy or vulnerability.
The Rare Condition Where People Have a Fear of...
The fear of touch, or haphephobia, is quite rare. For those who are affected, however, it can be devastating to both romantic and nonromantic relationships.
Arachnophobic? Understand Your Fear of Spiders
Arachnophobia is one of the most common specific phobias. Experts are not yet sure what causes a fear of spiders, but many feel that it may have evolved as an ancient survival mechanism. Read on for more information about arachnophobia.
Although full blown automatonophobia, or fear of humanoid figures, is rare, a certain level of nervousness is common. Read on for more on this unique phobia.
The Psychology of Fear
Fear is one of the most primal human emotions, consisting of both a physiological and an emotional response. Fear is experienced uniquely by everyone. Read on for more information on the psychology of fear.
Understanding Cibophobia, the Fear of Food
Cibophobia, or fear of food, is a relatively common but highly devastating phobia. Read on for important information on this complicated phobia.
Can Counter-Transference Contaminate a...
Counter-transference is a potentially damaging yet relatively common process experienced by many therapists. What is counter-transference, and how do therapists guard against its effects on clients? Find out here.
Cleithrophobia, or the fear of being trapped, is a specific phobia that focuses on getting stuck. It may be confused with claustrophobia, which focuses on the size of the space.
The fear of snakes is relatively common, and over time it can become life-limiting. Read on for more information on the symptoms and treatments for this common phobia.
Do You Know What Fear of Blood Is Called?
Hemophobia, or fear of blood, is a common specific phobia. Unlike most specific phobias, it can lead to low blood pressure and even fainting. Learn more about this unique phobia.
What Is Eclectic Therapy?
Definition of Eclectic Therapy. Phobias.
Fear of Vulnerability
The fear of vulnerability is all too common in modern society. This fear can be destructive to relationships of all types, destroying intimacy and stopping us in our tracks. But there is hope.
Why Some People May Be Scared to Bathe
Although relatively uncommon, the fear of bathing can have devastating consequences. Social isolation and trouble at work or school are not uncommon in those with ablutophobia. Read on for information on the diagnosis and treatment of this condition.
Genophobia is the fear of sexual intercourse. Sometimes confused with erotophobia, or the generalized fear of sex, genophobia is an intensely personal and often devastating specific phobia.
The fear of people, or anthropophobia, is similar to social phobia. Rather than fearing social situations, those with anthropophobia are afraid of other people themselves. The difference is subtle but important.
What Exactly Is a Phobia?
A phobia can be defined as an intense and irrational fear. Here you will find information to help you understand the definitions of anxiety and phobia and how they are treated.
Why Are Some People Afraid of Dogs?
Cynophobia, or fear of dogs, is extremely common. What causes this phobia, and how can it affect your life? Is treatment available? Find out here!
Philemaphobia, or the fear of kissing, is common among inexperienced young people, but may occur at any age. Some people fear germs or are disgusted by saliva, others are afraid of intimacy and vulnerability.
How to Overcome Your Fear of Germs
It is normal and prudent to take precautions against germs. However, mysophobia, or the fear of germs, takes normal caution to an extreme. Read on for more information on this relatively common phobia.
Scared of Needles? How to Overcome Your Fear
Trypanophobia, or fear of needles, is a relatively common phobia. It affects an estimated 10% of Americans. Fear of needles is an unusual phobia, as it can cause low blood pressure and fainting rather than fast heart rate and panic.
Fear of Space
Astrophobia, or fear of space, is a relatively common phobia. It may take different forms, from fear of aliens to fear of space exploration. Read on for more information on the fear of space.
What Is the Fear of Butterflies and Moths?
Lepidopterophobia, or the fear of butterflies and moths, is remarkably common. Though these insects are entirely harmless, many people are afraid of their looks or behaviors.
How to Overcome Your Fear of Ghosts
Phasmophobia, or the fear of ghosts, is a somewhat controversial phobia. Possibly related to the fear of death and shrouded in religious belief, this fear is thought by some to be symptomatic of disordered thinking. Read on to explore this complicated yet common phobia.
Think You Have a Phobia? These are Common...
A phobia can be defined as an intense and irrational fear of something specific. Read on to find out more about the symptoms of phobias.
The fear of doctors is surprisingly common. However, it is sometimes hard to distinguish a full-blown phobia from normal anxiety. Read on for tips on how to tell whether you have iatrophobia and how to cope with this limiting fear.
Effects, symptoms and ways to handle the fear of long words, a phobia that can be life-limiting, especially for children.
The Complete Definition of Therapeutic Milieu
Definition of Therapeutic Milieu
What You Should Know About the Fear of Clowns
Coulrophobia, or fear of clowns, seems pervasive in our society. Yet very little scientific research has been performed. How can something that seems so innocent be a source of such terror? Read on for a historical look at clown phobia.
Coping Skills
Definition of Coping Skills. Phobias.
Fear of Submerged Objects
The fear of submerged objects encompasses many related phobias. Some people are afraid of natural phenomena such as animals or logs, others of man-made items.
Triskaidekaphobia, or fear of the number 13, is an ancient phobia. Yet some experts believe that is should not be considered a phobia at all. Read on for both sides of the debate.
Pediophobia, or fear of dolls, may take many forms. Some people are afraid of all dolls, while others fear only specific types. Read on for more information on this relatively common phobia.
The fear of blushing, or erythrophobia, is an ironic fear. The more afraid we become, the stronger the blushing response tends to be. Here's how to cope.
Why People May Be Afraid of Stairs or Slopes
Bathmophobia, or fear of stairs and slopes, can be tricky to diagnose. Symptoms are shared with a range of other disorders, such as fear of heights, fear of climbing and medical vertigo. Learn more about this complicated phobia.
Important Symptoms of Agoraphobia
Agoraphobia is a specific type of phobia, hallmarked by the fear of having a panic attack in public. Provided here is information to help you recognize the symptoms of agoraphobia.
Flying With Claustrophobia
Flying with claustrophobia presents unique challenges. Crowded airports, invasive security screenings and small plane seats can greatly increase anxiety. However, a few tips and tricks can help make your journey more pleasant.
Therapist: Understanding What Your Therapist Does
Your therapist is an important part of the treatment team. Here is a look at what to expect from your therapist or counselor.
Aquaphobia, or fear of water, can be devastating. Without treatment, it could lead to numerous other fears, isolation and even depression.
Astraphobia, or the fear of thunder and lightning, is especially common in children; however, it can affect people of any age. Read on for more on this relatively common phobia.
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy
Definition of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy
Fear of Loud Noises
Ligyrophobia, sometimes known as phonophobia, is the fear of loud noises. The phobia is more common in children than in adults, but sometimes indicates an underlying health condition.
Are You Afraid of Large Objects?
Megalophobia can be generally defined as the fear of large objects. This fear may be specific to large animals, ships or other items, or may be more generalized. Megalophobia is often exploited in Halloween events such as Universal Orlando's Halloween Horror Nights 2008. Read on for more on the myths and realities of this unusual phobia.
Overcoming the Fear of Flying
Aerophobia, or fear of flying, is a relatively common but potentially devastating phobia. Learn some causes of aerophobia and how it is generally treated.
What Is the Fear of Escalators?
Escalaphobia, or the fear of escalators, is surprisingly common. Yet most escalator accidents are due to rider error. Why are we so afraid, and how can we treat the fear?
What Is the Fear of Driving?
Despite the American love of the open road, driving phobias are surprisingly common. Sometimes linked to agoraphobia or claustrophobia, these fears may also occur on their own.
Glossophobia, or the fear of public speaking, is surprisingly common. Unfortunately, it can also be extremely life-limiting. Here you will find information on diagnosing and treating this common phobia.
Understanding the Fear of Zombies
Kinemortophobia, or the fear of zombies, is rooted in older and more generalized legends of the undead. Yet zombies continue to terrify us today. Why are these creatures so frightening, and how can we cope?
Understanding the Fear of Tornadoes or Hurricanes
Lilapsophobia, or fear of tornadoes and hurricanes, is related to astraphobia, or fear of storms. However, those with lilapsophobia worry that the storm will turn severe. Learn all about this unique phobia.
Behavior Modeling
Behavior modeling is a powerful therapeutic tool, but it can be negative as well as positive. What is behavior modeling and how is it used?
People have phobias - or fears - of many different things, including common food items. Arachibutyrophobia is one such phobia.
What Is the Fear of Winter Driving?
The fear of winter driving is surprisingly common. Some people are afraid of driving in general, some of being trapped in the cold. Others worry about having an accident.
Definition of behaviorism. Phobias.
Maskaphobia or Fear of Masks
Maskaphobia, or fear of masks, can take several different forms. Some people are afraid only of horror masks, while others fear even costumed characters. Read on for more information on this relatively common phobia.
What Is Bibliophobia?
Bibliophobia is a relatively uncommon phobia that involves the fear of books. You may be afraid of all books or only those of a certain style or genre. Read on for more information on this unusual phobia.
What Is the Fear of Chewing Gum?
The fear of chewing gum is known as chiclephobia. Although rare, this phobia can cause issues in daily life. Oprah Winfrey is arguably the best-known sufferer of chiclephobia.
Collective Unconscious
Definition of Collective Unconscious
Do You Have a Fear or Phobia?
If you are afraid of something specific, it can be difficult to decide whether you are experiencing a fear or phobia. A phobia is sometimes seen as simply a worse level of fear. This is not entirely accurate, though. Read on for more information on the differences between phobia and simple fear.
Psycho-Educational Group
A psycho-educational group is a specific type of therapy group focusing on educating clients. Why is it so important? Who is in charge? Learn all about these groups here.
Psychoanalytic Theory of Phobias
There are three major categories of theories on the nature of phobias. Freud's psychoanalytic theory is one of the oldest.
Treatment Options for Phobias
If you have been diagnosed with a phobia, you may wonder about your options for treatment. Find out here about commonly used treatment options.
Physiological Response
Many phobia sufferers claim that the physiological response to fear is the worst part of the phobia. But what exactly is a physiological response, and what are some common responses? Find out here.
Fear of Death in Children
Thanatophobia, or the fear of death, strikes children as well as adults. A mild form may be normal for children, but it can heartbreaking for parents to witness.
Social Cognitive Theory
Social cognitive theory is a subtype of cognitive theory that explains the effects others have on our behaviors. How does social cognitive theory relate to phobias? Find out more.
The Fear of Cooking Can Take Many Forms
Mageirocophobia, or fear of cooking, can be divided into many types. Suffering from one or more types is relatively common, although a more severe phobia may encompass virtually all types. Read on to learn more.
Learning Theory and Phobias
Theories on the development of phobias can be loosely divided into three types. Learning theory is a broad classification that includes several important theories. Read on to find out more.
Biological Basis of Phobias
There are three main categories of theories that are used to explain the development of phobias. According to the theory of biological psychology, phobias are caused by physiological differences in the brain. Read on to learn more about biological psychology.
Definition of Constructivism. Phobias.
What Is the Fear of Sharp Objects?
There's a catch-all term for numerous specific fears involving sharp objects. From knives to needles to umbrella points, why are we afraid of sharp things?
Treatment Plan
Definition of Treatment Plan. Phobias.
What Is the Fear of Travel?
Hodophobia, or the fear of travel, is highly personalized. Some people are afraid to leave home at all, while others fear only specific forms of transportation. Mild cases may respond to simple preparation, while more severe cases generally require professional intervention.
Your Guide to Understanding the Affordable Care...
The quest for universal health care has largely defined Barack Obama's presidency. With the passage of H.R. 3590: the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Obama's plan is now a reality. Bitterly opposed by Republicans and lauded by Democrats, the Act is largely misunderstood by the public. Read on for a detailed look at fact versus fiction.
What Is the Fear of Mirrors?
The fear of mirrors may have many different root causes. Some fears are rooted in body image issues, others in the fear of the supernatural.
Psychological and Emotional Effects of Phobias
Beyond the obvious impact of a phobia, there can be numerous additional impacts on your life. Find out more about the emotional health impacts of phobias here.
What Really Causes Phobias?
The causes of phobias are not yet fully understood. However, researchers have identified several possible factors. Read on to discover some possible causes of phobias.
A compulsion is a ritual performed to relieve anxiety. Although you may know that your compulsion is irrational, you may feel powerless to overcome it. Learn more about compulsions here.
Understanding the Fear of Vomiting
Emetophobia, or fear of vomiting, is surprisingly common, though little discussed. The fear may be caused by many different factors, and can have devastating consequences for sufferers. Find out more here.
Stage Fright
Stage fright is a subset of glossophobia, or fear of public speaking. It can affect performers of all walks of life, from kids in school to professional actors. Read on for more on this common phobia.
Arguably the best-known psychotropic medication in the world, Prozac is in a category of drugs known as SSRIs. Prozac is most often prescribed for depression, but is sometimes used for phobias such as social phobia, often as an adjunct to therapy.
Roller Coaster Phobia
Roller coaster phobia is surprisingly common, a fact that may seem unlikely these days, as theme parks compete to build
Magical Thinking
Definition of magical thinking. Phobias.
Is Fear of Illness Normal?
Hyponchondriasis, or hypochondria, is an often-misunderstood disorder. It is not technically a phobia, but shares many of the same symptoms. Read on for more information on the symptoms and treatment for hypochondria.
Stop! Technique
Definition of stop technique. Phobias.
What Is the Fear of Vacuum Cleaners?
The fear of vacuum cleaners is surprisingly common in young children and pets, though it is rare in older kids and adults. Why are children and pets so afraid, and how can we help?
What Is Object Relations Theory?
Focusing on our relationships with others, object relations theory acknowledges that our first and most important relationship is with our mother. Difficulties in that relationship could set us up for a lifetime of challenges.
Diagnosing a Phobia
A phobia is an irrational yet intense fear of an object or situation. Read on for information about diagnosing a phobia.
Negative Reinforcement
Definition of Negative Reinforcement
Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia, or fear of the number 666, is surprisingly common. Shrouded in religious belief, the fear can be quite pervasive. Read on to learn more about this unique phobia.
Genuphobia, or the fear of knees, encompasses a variety of different phobias. Some people are afraid of their own knees, some of other people's knees. Some actually fear the process of kneeling.
Theories on the Development of Phobias
Experts are not yet certain what causes phobias. However, current theories can be broken down into three major categories. Read on to learn more on the theories of phobia development.
Medications for Phobias
If you have been diagnosed with a phobia, you will have a few choices for treatment. One popular option is treatment with anxiety medications. Provided here is a look at some popular anxiety medications that are used to treat phobias.
Bromidrophobia, or fear of body odors, can be largely traced to the current obsession with cleanliness. Read on for more on this relatively common phobia.
Blank Slate
Definition of Blank Slate. Phobias.
Fears of Failure and Success
Both fear of failure and success tend to respond well to treatment. Cognitive-behavioral techniques are used to learn new ways of thinking about choices.
What Is the Fear of Madness?
The fear of madness played an important role in 19th century Gothic horror, but remains a very real fear today. Some people are afraid of institutionalization or social stigma, while others fear the psychological and emotional symptoms of mental illness.
Zoloft, or sertraline, is an SSRI. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors slow the reabsorption of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain. Like all medications, there are pros and cons to taking Zoloft.
Cryophobia, or the fear of cold, is a highly personalized phobia. Everyone perceives temperature slightly differently, so no two people experience cryophobia in exactly the same ways.
Herpetophobia, or fear of reptiles, is relatively common around the world. As such, it is often exploited by Halloween events such as Universal Orlando's Halloween Horror Nights 2008. Read on for more on this common phobia.
How Positive Reinforcement Helps Enhance Behavior
Positive reinforcement is a technique used to increase desired behavior. What exactly does it entail? Learn more here.
Cruise Ship Phobia
Separate from other cruise-related fears, such as claustrophobia and fear of the water, cruise ship phobia is an actual fear of the ship itself. What causes this fear and how can it be treated?
Doomsday Phobias
Doomsday phobias are a relatively broad category that can encompass a wide range of more specific phobias. Any phobia that involves fear of the end of the world could be classified as a doomsday phobia. Learn more about these surprisingly common phobias.
Systematic Desensitization
Definition of Systematic Desensitization
Fear of Being a Passenger
The fear of being a passenger, also known as amaxophobia, may be mild or severe. How much it impacts your life depends on how often you need to travel. People in walkable neighborhoods are typically less affected than those who must travel to meet basic needs.
Learn about the relatively uncommon siderodromophobia, or fear of trains, which some believe to be a phobia that is simply underreported.
What Is the Fear of Train Tracks?
The fear of train tracks is often related to a generalized fear of trains, but sometimes stands alone. Why are railroad tracks and subway tracks so scary and how can we cope with our fears?
Therapeutic Rapport
Therapeutic rapport is often mentioned as an important component of the therapeutic relationship. But what exactly is therapeutic rapport, and how is it created?
Dentophobia, or fear of dentists, is incredibly common. It can become problematic, though, when it leads you to avoid needed dental treatments. Read on for more information on dentophobia.
Climacophobia, or fear of climbing, can be complicated to diagnose. It may be linked to several other phobias, including acrophobia and bathmophobia. Find out more about this unique phobia.
Defense Mechanisms
According to psychoanalytic theory, defense mechanisms are the ego's way of relieving the tension caused by anxiety. What are the defense mechanisms, and how do they influence our behavior?
Gymnophobia, or the fear of nakedness, may take many forms. Whether you are afraid of your own nudity or of others being naked, gymnophobia can make daily life complicated.
Cognitive Reframing
Definition of Cognitive Reframing
What Is the Fear of Anger?
Angrophobia, or the fear of anger, refers to the fear of becoming angry. Often rooted in childhood experiences, angrophobia can eventually lead to self-loathing and social isolation.
Goals of Therapy
Definition of Goals of Therapy. Phobias.
What Is the Fear of Insects?
Entomophobia, or the fear of insects, is relatively common. While most people experience only a mild reaction, those with a severe fear may have a panic attack. But are we really afraid of the animal itself or is there something else at work?
Who can forget Robin Williams as John Keating, encouraging his students to rip out the textbook pages on grading poetry? The film Dead Poets Society illustrated one of the main reasons that many fear poetry. Take a closer look at this surprisingly common phobia.
Symptoms of a Specific Phobia
A specific phobia is an intense, irrational fear of a specified object or situation. Provided here is information on recognizing the symptoms of a specific phobia.
Panic Attack
Definition of Panic Attack. Phobias.
What Is the Fear of Monsters?
The fear of monsters, or tetraphobia, is common in young children but quite rare in teens and adults. As a childhood phase, the fear is generally short-lived and easily remedied. A persistent fear in an older child or adult, however, may require professional intervention.
Phagophobia, or the fear of swallowing, is often triggered by a bad eating experience. Similar to the fear of choking, phagophobia may worsen over time, eventually leading to a severely restricted diet. Fortunately, treatment is usually simple and effective.
Learning Theory
Definition of Learning Theory. Phobias.
The fear of air, or anemophobia, includes numerous related phobias. Anemophobia is often rooted in another phobia, but may also occur independently.
Religion and Phobias
The link between religion and phobias appears to be powerful, although much research is still needed. Certain types of phobias are likely to have a religious component, which often surfaces during times of religious questioning. Learn more about the interaction between religion and phobias.
What Is the Fear of Deformity?
The fear of deformity or disfigurement is rooted in fears as diverse as medical phobias and the fear of strangers. Some people are afraid of others with deformities, some fear developing a deformity, and others are afraid of bearing a deformed child. Whatever the specific fear and its cause, therapy can relieve the symptoms.
What Is the Fear of Demons?
Daemonophobia, or the fear of demons is often rooted in religious beliefs. Other common factors include horror films and urban legends. Why is daemonophobia so powerful, and how can we fight it?
Scoptophobia, or the fear of being stared at, runs the gamut of severity. For some, this fear is life-limiting, leading sufferers to avoid even casual encounters with friends.
Definition of Nosophobia. Phobias.
Paraphobia, or the fear of sexual perversion, is a relatively complicated phobia. The definition of perversion is not cut and dried, and different people may have wildly different views of what constitutes perversion.
What Is Social Phobia?
Social phobia is a complicated diagnosis that may incorporate several different specific fears. Learn more about social phobia and how it is managed and treated.
Talk Therapy
If you have never been in therapy, you may have some fears and concerns. Knowing what to expect can ease your mind and help you decide on a style of therapy. Read on for a basic overview of the process of talk therapy.
Alternative Treatments for Phobias
Current medical thought supports two basic treatment options for phobias - therapy and medication. However, some people find relief in alternative treatments. Find more information here.
What Is the Fear of Hospitals?
The fear of hospitals is often, though not always, linked to other medical phobias. Sometimes the fear is actually of the hospital itself.
Living With Phobias
Living with a phobia can be difficult. Read on for advice on managing your phobia and learning to live with the condition.
How Can I Manage Claustrophobia Symptoms?
Claustrophobia is an insidious condition that tends to worsen over time, and can become extremely life-limiting. Fortunately, there are several basic steps to help you manage your claustrophobia in any situation.
Winter Phobias
Winter phobias run the gamut from weather-related fears to doomsday concerns. Although many of these fears may be triggered at any time, they are particularly likely to occur during the winter months.
What Is Agoraphobia?
Agoraphobia is often defined as a fear of leaving home, but this is not quite accurate. Instead, agoraphobia may be seen as a fear of fear. Learn more about this relatively common, often devastating phobia.
Heliophobia, or the fear of sunlight, is often related to other issues. From medical sun sensitivity to body image concerns, the root cause of heliophobia can be difficult to determine.

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