• Jane Snookes

Phobias in depth

Did you know phobias are the most common type of anxiety disorder in the UK? Data suggests 10 million people in the UK suffer from a phobia(1). That is 15% of the population!

A phobia is a life altering, overwhelming fear of an object, animal or situation. A person with a specific phobia will do everything to avoid the object or situation and spend time worrying about it, to the extent their lives are planned around it. Phobias come from experiences or learned from parent’s responses.

On top of that, there are two types of phobia: simple and complex. Simple phobias are fears about specific objects, animals, situations or activities such as spiders, flying, blood or dogs. Complex phobias are more deep rooted than simple phobias and tend to be associated with a particular circumstance or situation. Two common examples of complex phobias are agoraphobia and social phobia.

There are many specific phobias. This is the top ten in order of how common they are(2): 1. Acrophobia is a fear of heights affects 2. Glossophobia is a fear of public speaking 3. Ophidiophobia is a fear of snakes 4. Aerophobia is a fear of flying 5. Arachnophobia is a fear of spiders 6. Agoraphobia is a fear of crowds/being outside/public places 7. Coulrophobia is a fear of clowns 8. Claustrophobia is a fear of enclosed spaces 9. Musophobia is a fear of mice and rats 10. Nyctophobia is a fear of the dark

Other common phobias include claustrophobia, a fear of closed-in places, a fear of tunnels, highway driving, water, flying, animals and blood. Some less common phobias include: • Nomophobia – (Fear of not having mobile phone access) • Phobophobia – (Fear of having a phobia) • Anthophobia – (Fear of Flowers) • Hexakosioihexekkontahexaphobia – (Fear of the number 666) • Heliophobia – (Fear of Sunlight) • Chorophobia – (fear of Dancing) • Ablutophobia – (fear of bathing)

Hypnotherapy is a highly effective way of resolving and reducing responses to phobic triggers. With many years experience, I have many techniques available to approach each client's cause and reaction individually to help them regain control and get their lives back. It is well worth giving me a call to talk it through.

References: 1. NHS Inform: Phobias: https://www.nhsinform.scot/illnesses-and-conditions/mental-health/phobias 2. Push Doctor article: What are the UK’s 10 most common phobias? By Dr Adam Simon Created: 25 October, 2016 Updated: 11 June, 2019 3. Yougov: Afraid of heights? You're not alone In: LifestylePolitics & current affairs: March 20, 2014 https://yougov.co.uk/topics/politics/articles-reports/2014/03/20/afraid-heights-not-alone

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