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Most Common Phobias And How To Overcome Them

  • Posted on- Aug 29, 2017
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Most Common Phobias

A phobia is an irrational and excessive fear of an object or situation, according to the American Psychiatric Association (APA). Phobia involves a sense of endangerment or a fear of harm. Phobias are commonly developed by some incident which was unpleasant, but what exactly do people fear the most?

Most common phobias that people suffer from are:


It is a phobia which is quite common. It is a fear of places and situations which give the feeling of being present in an unsafe environment. It creates a vicious cycle and the sufferer gets panic attacks due to agoraphobia, when nearing any event that necessitates facing such circumstances.

Agoraphobia usually develops sometime between late-adolescence and mid-30s.The disorder often begins as a spontaneous and unexpected panic attack, which then leads to anxiety over the possibility of another attack happening.


The fear of dogs is called cynophobia. Many people fear dogs and there is no harm in that. But cynophobia is an extreme and uncommon fear about dogs. It is one of the most common animal phobias in the world. This phobia is not just a normal apprehension of unfamiliar canines it is an irrational and excessive fear that can have a serious impact on a person's life and functioning.


It is a fear of germs. This fear is also akin to obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). A person may suffer from both these disorders at the same time. Sufferers often become isolated in mysophobia.

This common phobia can also result in people avoiding physical contact with other people out of fear of contamination, overuse of disinfectants, and excessive preoccupation with media reports about illness outbreaks.


It is another kind of a common phobia which is fear of heights. It is an irrational fear of heights or the fear of falling. Close to 30 percent people in the entire world suffer from acrophobia. In severe cases, a victim may even suffer panic attacks.

While in some cases this fear of heights may be the result of a traumatic experience. Current thinking suggests that this fear may have evolved as an adaptation to an environment in which a fall from heights posed a significant danger.


It is the fear of flying which is called aerophobia. Almost 6.5 percent of the world's population has this fear of flying. This phobia is closely linked with agoraphobia and claustrophobia. In extreme cases, this may affect a person's professional and personal life when air travel becomes inevitable.

The fear of flying sometimes causes people to avoid flying altogether. It is often treated using exposure therapy, in which the client is gradually and progressively introduced to flying.


The fear of small spaces, this phobia is common as 5-7 percent of the world population suffers from claustrophobia. This phobia is related to fear of suffocation or the fear of restriction. Very few sufferers seek treatment in this phobia and majority of them go untreated. This phobia is mainly related to the fear of suffocation or the fear of restriction.


Trypophobia is the fear of injections, a condition that can sometimes cause people to avoid medical treatments and doctors. Like many phobias, this fear often goes untreated because people avoid the triggering object and situation.

When people suffering from this phobia have an injection, they may experience feelings of extreme dread and elevated heart rate leading up to the procedure.


The fear of thunder and lightning is called astraphobia. It is true that thunderstorm and lightning can make even the brave run for cover, but for an individual suffering from astraphobia, it is altogether a different case. Starting in childhood, this fear can continue into adulthood.

Symptoms of astraphobia are often similar to those of other phobias and include shaking, rapid heart rate, and increased respiration.


The fear of snakes is known as ophidiophobia. One may think how fearing snakes can be termed as a phobia as almost everyone is scared of snakes. But for people who suffer from this phobia, it becomes impossible to indulge in hiking, camping and related activities.

Managing phobias

A little of fear and phobia is normal. However, when it goes beyond control and begins to affect the daily activities of a person, it becomes a concern. Phobias are mental conditions which qualify for intervention.

You should visit a psychiatrist/psychologist who can help you overcome any kind of phobia, if faced with an extreme phobia. In fact, phobias are mostly related to anxiety disorder in a person.


user profile image
14-03-2018 03:04 PM

I have fear from flying. Book my appointment with a doctor. Thanks.

user profile image
14-03-2018 03:00 PM

Everybody has their own sort of phobia. I have fear of heights. Will try to keep these points in mind and counter my phobia.

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