We all have something that we are terrified of. Ever since I was little, I have been extremely scared of heights. But I was very embarrassed to tell someone and thought it only occurred to me. As I started growing up, I learnt that my fear also has a name to it and it is actually very common in human beings! Let’s learn about the 5 most common phobias.
Astraphobia is a fear of thunder and lightning. People with this phobia experience overwhelming feelings of fear when they encounter such weather-related phenomena.
During a thunder or lightning storm, people with this disorder may go to great lengths to take shelter or hide from the weather event such as hiding in bed under the covers or even ducking inside a closet or bathroom. People with this phobia also tend to develop an excessive preoccupation with the weather.
Aerophobia is a fear of flying, of being on an aeroplane, or other flying vehicle, such as a helicopter, while in flight. It is also referred to as flying anxiety.
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.
Acrophobia is an extreme or irrational fear or phobia of heights, especially when one is not particularly high up.
Acrophobia sometimes develops in response to a traumatic experience involving heights. Reasons may include falling from a high place, watching someone else fall from a high place, having a panic attack or other negative experience while in a high place or it can be hereditary. There may also be other reasons as well.
Ophidiophobia is a particular type of specific phobia, the irrational fear of snakes. It is sometimes called by a more general term, herpetophobia, fear of reptiles.
Some suggest that since snakes are sometimes poisonous, our ancestors who avoided such dangers were more likely to survive and pass down their genes. Or, it can also be a traumatic experience that you faced during your childhood which involves any snake.
Arachnophobia is the intense and irrational fear of spiders and other arachnids such as scorpions.
One of the most common explanations for this and similar animal phobias is that such creatures once posed a considerable threat to our ancestors who lacked the medical know-how and technological tools to address injuries from animals and insects. As a result, evolution contributed to a predisposition to fear these creatures.