World’s Top Ten Phobias

March 18, 2013 | In: Health

The American Psychiatric Association describes a phobia as an intense and irrational fear of an object or situation. In most cases, people with phobia have a fear of harm and a sense of endangerment.  Phobias are quite common, affecting nearly 12 million of the U.S. population and over 100,000 people in the United Arab Emirates according to the US Census and International Bureau.  Phobias are the most common mental disorder and more women than men are affected by them. In most cases, people are able to recognize their irrational fear and conquer it. Only in some instances, phobias become a life-long disorder. There are several treatments for phobias. The success of the treatment depends on the person and type of phobia.

Here are some of the most common phobias in the world.

 

 

1. Heights

If you get dizzy looking up at tall buildings or standing on a rooftop, you’re not alone. Fear of heights is one of the world’s most common phobias with an estimated 5 percent of the population suffering from so-called acrophobia.

 

2. Dentist

Most people

The extreme fear of snakes is considered one of the most common phobias and according to studies it could be an evolutionary imprint in people. Long ago, noticing a snake meant food for survival. Researchers suggest that the quick ability to spot a snake probably helped our ancestors survive in the wild.

don’t look forward to an extreme session of teeth cleaning. According to WebMD, some avoid going to the dentist because of anxiety and fear. A dental phobia becomes a serious problem when a person refuses to see the dentist at all costs. People suffering from this phobia only see the dentist when forced by agonizing pain.

 

3. The Dark

For many people, mainly kids, darkness can create immediate distress. In fact, the fear of the dark is one of the most common fears amongst kids. While most kids grow out of such fears, in some cases it reaches extreme levels and it is called nyctophobia. This phobia can last through adult life if left untreated. These days, many advertising agencies promote books that help parents and children deal with fear of the dark.

 

4. Snakes

The extreme fear of snakes is considered one of the most common phobias and according to studies it could be an evolutionary imprint in people. Long ago, noticing a snake meant food for survival. Researchers suggest that the quick ability to spot a snake probably helped our ancestors survive in the wild.

 

5. Flying

For people who suffer from a fear of flying don’t consider the skies friendly. Some people exhibit just a hint of anxiety, while others have an extreme flying phobia called aviophobia. This phobia can keep a person off airplanes altogether.

 

6. Dogs

For those who suffer from cynophobia, or extreme fear of dogs, any type of dog can scare them. This fear typically develops as a result of being bitten or watching somebody gets bitten.

 

7. Public Speaking

Does the prospect of speaking in front of an audience send sweat to your palms, bring a weird feeling to your gut, and bright red to you face? Social phobia, which affects millions of adults worldwide can keep people from moving up the ladder in the corporate world, or simply stop them from leading a social life.

 

8. Spiders

For some people, the everyday spider can cause extreme fears. It turns out women are four times more afraid of spiders than men.  This makes sense from an evolutionary perspective since women have encountered spiders on a daily basis while gathering food. Cringing at spiders was a way to keep them and their infants safe.

 

9. Places and Spaces

If you have an intense fear of any place where escape is difficult or impossible, you are one of the millions of people who suffer from agoraphobia. Feared places include: airplanes, elevators, bridges, sporting events, driving, public transportation, and shopping malls. The fear can prohibit a person leaving their home, being in a crowded area, or traveling in a car.

 

10. Lightning and Thunder

The sound and sight of thunder and lightning can lead to sweaty palms and heart-pounding meltdowns for people with severe weather phobia. In fact, some individuals relocate to regions known for calm weather.

 

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Karim
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