The World of Fear - Strange & Rare Phobias

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What are phobias?


"No passion so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear".

Edmund Burke, "On the Sublime and Beautiful."

Most of us can cope well with our odd fears and they don't usually have any major impact on our daily lives. Other people are not quite so lucky.

In addition to suffering from phobias, many also have to contend with other anxiety issues. Thankfully most phobias are well known to the medical profession and treatment can be given.

However, what happens when your phobia is rare? When your own doctor had never heard of it?

Frequently, people who suffer from any type of phobia – common or rare – feel so ridiculous that they avoid seeking any form of help. In addition, there are a higher percentage of people with rare phobias who avoid telling anyone and so often suffer alone.

A couple of basic definitions will give a little more understanding about the nature of phobias and fear.

Phobias:

‘Anxiety disorders in which the essential feature is a persistent and irrational fear of a specific object, activity, or situation that the individual feels compelled to avoid. The individual recognises the fear as excessive or unreasonable’. (Medical Dictionary Online)

Fear:

‘The unpleasant emotional state consisting of psychological and psychophysiological responses to a real external threat or danger, including agitation, alertness, tension, and mobilisation of the alarm reaction’. (Medical Dictionary Online)

Brain structures involved in dealing with fear and stress.
Brain structures involved in dealing with fear and stress. | Source
There is a phobia where people have an extreme fear of cleaning themselves.
There is a phobia where people have an extreme fear of cleaning themselves. | Source

Fears Associated with thought processes and the body

Phobias can be divided into two main types - simple and complex.

A simple phobia for example might be having a fear of the dentist. Simple phobias tend to come from childhood experiences and can fade with time.

Complex phobias tend to develop later on in life - late teens/early twenties. These tend to be much more difficult to treat and frequently develop with other psychological issues. An example of a complex phobia would be Agoraphobia (a fear of going outside and public places).

Phobias take many forms and the triggers are not always clearly defined - especially with the less common forms that are described in this hub.

There are many phobias associated with both our physical bodies and our thought processes. Here are just a few examples:

  • Urophobia - the fear of urine. This phobia is thought to be a disruption in thought based patterns where anxiety and stress levels increase at the thought of touching or being near urine. Often people will clean their bathrooms excessively. Any accidents where urine is spilt will result in the person insisting it be removed but cannot do the cleaning themselves. This fear very often goes hand in hand with a fear of germs.
  • Ablutophobia - Is a fear of cleaning or washing yourself. This phobia is usually found in both women and children who have unstable emotional conditions. Similar to other phobias, this psychological state may have arisen because of an incident in childhood. Children can also develop phobias by observing an adult who has a specific fear. Research also shows that a number of people developed a fear of showering after watching the Alfred Hitchcock's film 'Psycho'.
  • Scopophobia - the fear of being looked at. This particular fear often leads to social isolation. This type of phobia is frequently experienced by people suffering from mental illnesses such as schizophrenia. It often presents itself by the sufferer covering their face with their hands in order to hide from the gaze of other people.
  • Euphobia - the fear of receiving good news in the context that the person always feels that good news will be followed by bad news. Therefore on receipt of good news the person will often go into a severe anxiety state, waiting for bad news to follow.
  • Phobophobia - the fear of developing a phobia. This is classed more of a psychological disorder as there is no specific 'phobia' that the person has a problem with.

The fear of Friday the 13th is called paraskavedekatriaphobia word derived from the concatenation of the Greek words Paraskeví (Παρασκευή) (meaning Friday), and dekatreís (δεκατρείς) (meaning thirteen), attached to phobía (φοβία) (meaning fear).
The fear of Friday the 13th is called paraskavedekatriaphobia word derived from the concatenation of the Greek words Paraskeví (Παρασκευή) (meaning Friday), and dekatreís (δεκατρείς) (meaning thirteen), attached to phobía (φοβία) (meaning fear). | Source

Phobias About Objects and People

As with all phobias in the 'specific phobia' category, the following fears usually surface from the sub-conscious due to incidents in childhood.

The event has to be powerful enough to deeply impact on the mind, so creating the seed of fear. This seed is then buried deep within the sub-conscious.

Interestingly, this ‘seed’ is a safety mechanism. The subconscious is creating a 'fear' to alert the individual the next time that a similar danger is encountered.

Often as adults we have forgotten what the initial trigger was and so our phobias often don't make sense. In addition the fear seed may be created by unreal experiences.

Research has shown that movies, nightmares and stories can also create a seed that is then planted into the sub-conscious. As adults we may not think that a particular movie or book is scary, but to a young, impressionable mind, it can be terrifying.

Phobias develop when, in some way, the sub-conscious links fear with a particular image, object, scenario or person.

  • Pediophobia - the fear of dolls - can also include dummies, mannequins or even children. Many of us might well identify with a fear of dolls or dummies. There are a large number of people who find these objects unsettling and creepy. Eisoptrophobia* - the fear of mirrors. The fear of mirrors can take a number of forms. This can range from a fear of looking at your reflection, to a feeling that the mirror itself is in someway a threat to you. People also develop severe anxieties about breaking a mirror and although just a superstition, they feel compelled to avoid such an incident at all costs.
  • Sciophobia/Sciaphobia - is the fear of shadows. The name for this phobia is taken from the Greek - Scio - meaning fear. People suffering from this phobia can feel anything from dread to absolute terror. Again if we think about how shadows make us feel at times - in horror movies for example. Then the associations are not always nice. Shadows can be an indicator of the unknown or danger and to a child's mind a terrifying image.
  • Coulropobia - the fear of clowns. This phobia is probably one that again many of us can identify with. However, bear in mind that we're not talking about something that creeps us out for a few minutes then we get on with life. Having a phobia such as this can lead to severe anxiety and panic attacks.

*Footnote - I've used the term 'Eisoptrophobia for the fear of mirrors. However, I do realise that there is some debate on whether the term 'spectrophobia' should be used instead. Most of the medical definitions I have looked at state the term ‘Eisoptrophobia’ for a phobia about mirrors but many do not have the term 'spectrophobia' anywhere. Spectrophobia is more commonly used to mean a fear of ghosts. Nevertheless it’s also used to refer to a fear of looking at your own.

Source

Phobias

Have you ever suffered from severe anxiety or a phobia?

See results without voting

Otherworldly Phobias

Otherworldly phobias probably stem from the same childhood experiences as other phobias do.

However, there can be a problem when people go for therapy to their doctors/psychologists. The reason is that many of these professionals will regard such phobias as 'magical thinking'.

This term is used by psychology to define a mode of irrational fear. Difficulties will arise when the patient has a belief in the people, entities or objects associated with their anxiety, whereas the professionals will frequently dismiss them as fantasy.

Theophobia

This is the extreme fear of god or gods. This phobia is often connected to associated images - such as crucifixes and possibly other holy icons.

Phasmophobia/Spectrophobia

This is the fear of ghosts and spirits. It may be related to a general fear of death or dying called Thanatophobia.

However, phasmophobia may primarily just be a fear of the unknown. These phobias are very hard to pin down to a specific trigger or cause. Because of this, some experts believe it is a symptom of a much more serious disorder of anxiety and thought processes.

Paraskavedekatriaphobia/Friggatriskaidekaphobia

These phobias relate to the fear of the number 13 and Friday the 13th/Black Friday.

This is one of those superstitions and fears that can be found in almost every corner of the world. It’s also interesting to note that although phobias and superstitions are generally regarded as irrational, the following evidence has been gathered by researchers for Friday 13th.

Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia

As well as the awesome word for this phobia it's also a number phobia and this time the fear is based on the number '666'.

As with fears of the number 13 the 666 phobia probably has its origins in both superstition and religious beliefs.

The triggers could be the frightening Biblical book of Revelations. Alternatively, modern pop culture, books and movies have focused on this number as a symbol for the manifestation of evil. Related to this phobia is Demonophobia – the fear of demons.


It has to be remembered that although many of us can claim to have a fear of some of the above, with a phobia it goes beyond a general fear.

A true phobia is so powerful that it can literally affect every aspect of a person to the degree that they cannot live a normal life. Therefore, remember to have compassion for anyone suffering from a phobia.

I hope you've enjoyed this article on phobias and if you have experiences to share then please let us know in the comments section.

© 2011 Helen Murphy Howell

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Comments 45 comments

Painted Seahorse profile image

Painted Seahorse 5 years ago from Woodstock, GA

Fascinating subject! Some of those phobia names are truly a mouthful. I wonder if there was ever a time when clowns weren't viewed as somewhat sinister. It's the facepaint, the hair, the frowny or smiley faces, the fact that many of them are silent (mimes are creepy too) that make them frightening for kids, I think.


Rosemay50 profile image

Rosemay50 5 years ago from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand

Wow a very interesting hub. Luckily I have no phobias at all... except maybe when bees and wasps are around the thought of being stung terrifies me.

A great hub and voted up


Hollie Thomas profile image

Hollie Thomas 5 years ago from United Kingdom

Hi seeker7,

Reading your hub has brought back memories of my own phobias and those of family members. For me personally, wasps (simple phobia) I was stung at the age of seven by a wasp multiple times, but obviously my phobia does not affect my everyday life. My sister on the other hand, is terrified of large buttons. She absolutely detests them, and can't stand to be near them, let alone wear clothes that contain them (we've never been able to work out why this is) Pearl barley has a similar effect on her, though obviously she's able to avoid pearl barley situations.=) It must be terrible for those people that are so imprisoned by their phobia's. Interesting and informative read, Seeker7, voted up and interesting.


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

Fear of urine? I didn't know there was such a thing. There's probably a phobia for just about anything, huh? How do you even pronounce the number phobia? My goodness! Great hub. Voted up, useful, and interesting. Phobias are fascinating.


jjackson786 profile image

jjackson786 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

This was a really interesting read. Loved the pictures and the layout. Voted up!


CMHypno profile image

CMHypno 5 years ago from Other Side of the Sun

Interesting hub on phobias Seeker7, and packed with great information. Unfortunately, a lot of people dismiss phobias as something that people should be able to snap out of, but they underestimate the total terror felt by the sufferer and how it can immobilise them and prevent them from living their lives fully


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi paintedseahorse,

Many thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave a comment - much appreciated!

I agree with you about the clowns - I can't make up my mind either whether it's the over all appearance or the face? But whatever it is I find them as creepy as hell! There used to be a laughing clown's head in a glass case on Blackpool Pier - we were there on holiday. It used to move and roll it's head and laug - that terrified me when I was a kid. I would walk a mile out of it's way to avoid it. And if I forgot and found myself near it, I would shut my eyes until I passed the horrible thing! LOL!


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi Rosemay,

It's always lovely to hear from you and glad that you enjoyed the hub!

I wouldn't class my fears as phobias either - I'm a bit iffy with heights and clowns scare me a lot. But apart from that they don't affect my life or relationships that phobias can do with some people. It must be an awful thing to suffer from, especially as these poor folks know that it's irrational, they just can't stop these feelings of fear surfacing.


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi Hollie,

Lovely to hear from you and many thanks for stopping by. Wasps is a familiar one - I don't mind bees, but wasps I dislike. Their sting is very painful, so no wonder you have a phobia about them!

How terrible for your sister!! The mind is so deep and complex that it would be impossible I think to get to the root of many fears. A fear of buttons is a phobia in it's own right I believe and yes, I don't think many sufferers have managed to get to the root of it. And as you say, it must be awaful to have a fear that is like a prison! Many thanks for sharing your experiences.


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi Victoria Lynn,

Many thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment - much appreciated.

I know! Urine? But that wasn't the only one that took me by surprise. The fear of long words phobia is also a surprise. And yes, I think there is a phobia for most things. You can go to a number of sites and they have and alphabetical index - you find hundreds of phobias! They are fascinating I agree, but are all these phobias a sign of the times that we are living in or is the brain/mind even deeper than we can imagine?


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi jjackson786,

Many thanks for the visit and taking the time to leave a comment - much appreciated.

Glad that you enjoyed the hub - I really enjoyed writing this as the subject is so interesting. Thanks for the vote up!


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi CMHypno,

Lovely to hear from you and thanks for leaving a comment - much appreciated.

I agree with you! And just because some of these phobias are perhaps rare and very odd, it doesn't make them any less frightening to the people who experience them. I think what makes it so scary is that most will tell you, that they realise their fears are irrational. But there is something, much stronger, telling them otherwise - the sub-conscious has extraordinary power, so much so, that if it perceives danger it can over ride the logical side. I agree as well, people who are suffering from conditions such as depression, anxiety and phobias can't just shrug and walk away! I have, like yourself, seen someone become immobolised by absolute fear! It's very distressing for the person and those who are observing them going through such fear!


Slightly Bonkers profile image

Slightly Bonkers 5 years ago from Ireland

Hi Seeker7, very interesting article indeed. I personally emphasise for anyone having a phobia however for some of them it seems to me that some people think they need to have "something" in order to get attention.

Don't get me wrong, as I said I really feel for people with real phobias but to some of them I simply just want to say: suck it up.

If you think what our Grandparents went through in life especially after WW2 - there was no time for any phobia.

I think some people these days have too much time on their hands to think and develop something they might not if they would be a bit busier...


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 5 years ago from North Carolina

Awesome interesting Seeker. These lesser known phobias are frankly bizarre & unusual; but not to the sufferers unfortunately who have to suffer with them day after day. The only ones I've heard people say they have are are pediophobia and fear of clowns. My gosh, theres even a phobia about phobias! Excellent hub & research Seeker, you've done another fantastic write.


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi Slightlybonkers,

Great to hear from you and many thanks for leaving a comment.

I think you have made a valid point about phobias/attention seeking. Today there has been an enormous increase in neurosis and anxiety disorders - and definitely, neurosis and anxiety can develop out of boredom! I think some of it may have to do with the pace of life which is much faster than it used to be. But yes, our parents and grandparents didn't seem to show phobias as such, at least they didn't have a name for it like they do now. I responded to another hubber by asking if phobias are a sign of our times and I would say yes. For those genuinely suffering from phobias/anxiety/social disorders, I do sympathise with them because the genuine cases can disable your whole life. But yes, unfortunately you do get the 'attention seekers' who jump on the bandwagon for various reasons - but the difference in fakers and legitimates when fealing fear is very obvious.


jenn-zee profile image

jenn-zee 5 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

Great hub. Thanks.


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hey Alastar! Great to hear form you and glad that you enjoyed the hub.

Some of these phobias are totally bizzare I agree. I think it's another example of how the sub-conscious will always, in it's own way, express emotions, thoughts, memories or whatever. They may seem totally unrelated to our everyday self - but I don't think the sub-conscious is capable of lying in fact it always tells the truth, whether we like it or not. So for me, these weird phobias are another form of expression from the sub-conscious, similar to dreams - we don't always understand it, but it always has a reason to express the way it does. I think we would all benefit from a journey into the sub-conscious, although I tend to think the journey would be a rather upsetting and dangerous one.

Lovely again to hear from you!


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi jenn-zee,

Glad that you enjoyed the hub - many thanks for stopping by!


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 5 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

Whoa! What an exhaustive hub about phobias! Who knew? Excellent hub, voted up, interesting and awesome.

I once had a phobia to bananas and most people laughed at me, but it affected my life as you noted here. I did seek counseling and found out that most phobias are quite easy to cure. It worked for me anyway. Bananas are now my favorite fruit.


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi Austinstar,

Glad that you enjoyed the hub. I'm pleased that you got over your phobia - there are so many people who haven't had the help they need and as you rightly say, it does affect their entire life! I have a slight phobia with heights, but I can usually work it off as I'm going through it. Other people are not so lucky and must be going through hell!


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 5 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

I almost went to work at a phobia center in Dallas, TX. I also went for the treatment for my own phobia. So, I would heartily encourage phobia sufferers to seek treatment. It really works. It was very, very hard for me at first because the phobia itself is debilitating, but they teach you to accept reality and learn to control your body's natural tendency to panic in the face of your phobia.

It's very doable and doesn't really take that long as far as therapy goes. If fact, there are some phobias they can cure in one day if you are so inclined!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom

What a fascinating subject, I had no idea that some of these phobia's existed.

I feel so sorry for a sufferer who has one of these rarer phobias.

Thank you for sharing a great hub and voting up, best wishes MM


Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

Gypsy Rose Lee 5 years ago from Riga, Latvia

Wow what a hub! Super interesting!I'm saving this and giving it another once over. I'm afraid of heights. What brings on a lot of fear is movies. They get in your brain. After Psycho I couldn't shower for a long time if no one else was home. Stephen King gave me IT and when I saw a clown I almost passed out.


goygoy90 profile image

goygoy90 5 years ago from Bukidnon, Philippines

phobia, have you heard about Genophobia? i believed it is not listed on this article, FYI Genophobia is fear of sex, fortunately, I'm not one of those people who have this Genophobia, lol! nice article, ,


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi MM,

Great to hear from you! I know what you mean - there were some that are shockers to me and if the poor folk are genuine,it must be nightmare to try and cope day in and day out! Glad I don't have to contend with that!

Thanks for your visit and your support!


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hey Gypsy, great to hear from you!

I'm also a bit nervy with heights and how those blokes can work on those skyscrapers I will never know!

Yes! Movies do go inside your brain - well the ones that are made well. Psycho spooked me right out! And The Exorcist, when I first saw it, just about made me poop my pants - I was honestly terrified! I still can't actually look at that wee girls face when she is all made up, it creeps me out too much!

Steven King - the master, has a lot to answer for! The first time I saw Pennywise the clown it freaked me out big time - especially when the jagged teeth came out! OMG! It was sooo scary, so I'm not surprised that you just about fainted! LOL!

Lovely to hear from you again Gypsy and as always your comments are a treasure and joy to read!


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi goygoy90,

Great to hear from you and many thanks for stopping by.

Genophobia? I haven't heard of that one, it sounds very interesting! But perhaps not so interesting for the folks who suffer from it? What an awful life to live having a fear of sex!! Hopefully most of them can get treatment for this phobia!

Many thanks again for your visit and very interesting comment!


femmeflashpoint 5 years ago

Seeker7, pretty cool information in this. :)

I've thought about it hard, and I didn't think I had a single phobia, and then I began remembering the snake thing. And then the heights thing. And, then there's that swimming in open water thing. And then bugs ... mice ... oh no ...

I need a therapist!


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

LOL!!! Hi femmeflashpoint!

Oh you poor thing! Actually you sound a bit like me - heights, high bridges over water, clowns and creepy dolls! Maybe we could get the same therapist?!!!!


femmeflashpoint 5 years ago

LOL Seeker!

I really gotta get started on that psyche degree. But, with all these phobias, I'm wondering how I'll ever manage to do anyone any good?

Woe is me!


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

LOL! femmeflashpoint, well if I can be a nurse for so long without doing my patients any harm - I think - I'm sure you'll be a great help to other folks with phobias when you get your degree!


thelyricwriter profile image

thelyricwriter 5 years ago from West Virginia

Voted up and across but funny. You have really did your homework on this one Seeker7. I never realized that there was so many different categories of fear. Very interesting to say the least and I applaud you on the hard work. This article is very detailed and I believe I will read it once more. I have been up all day and night. Great work. Hope you have a great weekend. Take care.


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi thelyricwriter,

Glad you enjoyed the hub!!! Although I know it wouldn't be funny having a full blown phobia I have to admit that in my ignorance, one or two of them had me sniggering - much to my shame!! I didn't realise either how many phobias there are - it doesn't really reflect very well on the our present society does it!!

Great to hear from you and have a lovely weekend too.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 5 years ago from Shelton

I like this, the idea, the concept, everything about this hub :) Frank


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hello Frank,

Many thanks for stopping by and glad that you enjoyed the hub! It makes the hard work worth while!!! LOL!


kittythedreamer profile image

kittythedreamer 5 years ago from the Ether

This was very intriguing, Seeker7. I know someone who has a real fear (probably phobia) of little people. She can't even watch the Wizard of Oz without freaking out! I don't particularly understand phobias because I don't have any...but it is quite fascinating how simple things can really scare the daylights out of people. Voted up and awesome!


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi Kitty, lovely to hear from you and glad you enjoyed the hub.

It is very odd what things will develop into a phobia - but that is the awesome power of the sub-conscious I guess. I'm nervous of heights, although not as much as I use to be. The only way I can describe it is that consciousness is blocked and your instincts kick in. What you are most aware of is sickening fear, whether there is real danger or not. You do try to bring your rational mind back into focus, sometime it works, but at other times you don't come back to normal until you are out of the situation that has triggered your fear. It's a very odd and thorougly unpleasant experience and afterwards you feel like a complete dummy!

That's very interesting about your friend and small people. It's surprising how often this fear does crop up. I also have a friend who is terrified of them and will walk miles in the opposite direction if she meets a small person. She feels so guilty and awful afterwards, but this fear just kicks in and there is very little she can do about it.

Thanks again for the visit and the vote up!


Admiral_Joraxx profile image

Admiral_Joraxx 5 years ago from Philippines

Very interesting read I got here! wow! it's like you taught me everything about phobias seeker7. I just kinda feel so ridiculous about really really weird phobias such as fear of urine, cleaning yourself, good news and the fear of phobia itself. Where they real man? that's really ridiculous. But I know there's nothing I can do about that. People really do fear things that which cause them a really bad experience. I don't remember having phobias but I was kinda afraid of ghost when I was a kid. Thanks for sharing this great information seeker7. I appreciate a lot your writing and your excellent choice of topics. 1 vote up, useful and interesting for this wonderful piece. =)


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi to you Admiral_Joraxx - I love your name, very interesting!

I agree it is ridiculous and that's often the way that fear and the subconcious present themselves. Not rationally but in a twisting and turning kind of way. So not only do some folks have to cope with fearing the ridiculous they also have to go a torturous route to get to the cause. And as far as I can tell these phobias are real, although thankfully rare. Many of the rare phobias are also in conjunction with other mental health issues.

Many thanks for the visit, the great comment and the vote up - much appreciated!


thesingernurse profile image

thesingernurse 4 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

This hub is very interesting. As a nurse, how do you address this phobias and related issues of anxiety with your patients?


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 4 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi thesingernurse,

Many thanks for visiting the hub and for taking the time to leave a comment - it's much appreciated.

I think as a nurse, even although the patients therapy will be mostly psychological/psychotherapy based, there is much that can be done. I think the most imporant thing is to ensure that the patient knows you treat their phobias seriously. I feel, with any anxiety issues, when the patient feels no one takes them seriously, then this obviously increases their distress and therapy is less likely to work. What may seem ridiculous to many of us, is the stuff of someone else's nightmares.

Very often as a nurse - and I'm sure you've had this experience as well - patients will ask you to explain things to them that they, for different reasons, felt they could not ask another professional. Very often I've seen myself as a nurse, being a vital bridge for a patient between them and another professional. So as a nurse it's important to keep up to date as much as possible with the therapy techniques being used to treat the patient. A nurse also has a vital role to play in ensuring that the patient understands how important it is to comply, as much as they can, with advice given by another professional. I think that when you give this additional support to your patient this does help to alleviate their anxieties to a greater extent.


MimiTachikawa 4 years ago

If phobias are medical conditions my sister's doctor is in the wrong. She has a fear of swallowing pills. He would not prescribe her the liquid form even though he knows she can't take tablets.

My phobia is Coccinellidaephobia. It is the fear of ladybirds (ladybugs). I don't know how common or rare it is but I hate seeing them alive, dead or on pictures/photos. It would be interesting to see if others have the same fear as I do.


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 4 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

HI MImiTachikawa, many thanks for stopping by.

It would be the first time that some fool of a doctor has disregarded a patient's statement just because they personally don't believe in the condition or whatever. She should get antoher opinion. It isn't that rare to find people who have a fear of swalloing objects like pills and usually they have a fear of choking. So when you get a twat of a doctor that hasn't a clue, then your sister is going to get even more anxious. So what happens when she gets more anxious? Her throat dries up and swallowing becomes much more difficult! In the meantime, get her to crush her tablets and take the contents with something sweet or strong tasting to cover up the medicine taste. Capsules usually go down easier, but if she has difficulty with them as well, then perhaps putting them in between small bits of soft food can help.

As to your own phobia - wow! Now that is a rare one and what a horrible experience for you? Even when you look at photos you get a reaction must be very hard to deal with. I would be very interested as well to know if others do have the same fear.


thesingernurse profile image

thesingernurse 4 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

I couldn't agree more! In all instances, not just in addressing phobias, nurses (should) always bridge those gaps between the patient and among other allied health professionals.

As for the subjective response of the patient, I am very much aware of the feeling of being contested with what you feel - may it be pain or any emotional upheaval. I, myself, have some form of phobia. I have this weird response to lights being turned off - it makes it very difficult for me to breathe. And whenever I tell my family members not to play a joke on me, they still do and I end up feeling constricted each time they pull a prank on me. That makes me more sensitive whenever I encounter a patient with anxiety-related struggles and my experience makes me understand them even more.

Thank you for sharing this. Having seen your response reminded me of this wonderful hub you made, which I have read, a couple of months ago. :)


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 4 years ago from Fife, Scotland Author

Hi the singernurse, many thanks for your wonderful response here and I agree with all you have said. Having a phobia does make you more sensitve both as a nurse and as a general support to others who have phobias. I do think there should be much more understanding and compassion for anyone who suffers from phobia no matter how odd they may be.

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