Phobia: Types, Symptoms, and Causes

Hydrophobia: translates to fear to water, Claustrophobia: a fear of being in confined spaces. There are numerous types of phobia’s although in general the definition of phobia is simple, that say’s ‘ insistent and irrational fear to any activity, thing or situation, that leads the person to avoid it.

The word ‘Phobia‘ is Greek word that means ”fear” or ”horror”. When the person experience phobia of any kind, they have the fear to that situation, or an object. Phobia may vary form the regular fears as it interferes with our life or routine work whether at home, work place, schools, restaurants or anywhere.

To avoid this experience of phobia, usually people fend off such phobic objects or situations, or they encounter with deep fear or anxiety. It is said that the even imagining threat is much fearful than the actual threat when posed to the cause of terror.

There are three broad categories of phobia recognized by the American Psychiatric Association (APA), which are:

Social phobia:

It is also known as social anxiety, however this cannot be consider as shyness. People can be called as social phobic, when the thought of social gatherings becomes terrifying form them, as they have social anxiety. Moreover, there are people who have intense fear of public judgements, their comments, humiliations, or sometimes being single.


There are certain unavoidable circumstances and it becomes difficults to escape from them and the person has to undergo to face them. These fears can be like when you are in lift, or walking alone along the streets. It is misinterpret that this is kind of fear at open space, however it is applicable small-scale area like elevator, public transport. Agoraphobian’s are at higher risk of the panic or mental disorders.

Specific phobia:

Phobias to reptiles like snakes, lizards, etc. Specific phobias are the simple phobia that a person experiences in their day to day life. These phobias are linked to identifiable causes, and hence not consider to affect the daily routine work in that significant way.


Given below are the common symotomns observed in a person experiencing phobia:

  • Not able to perform or face the situation properly.
  • Uncontrollable anxiety sensation when the person even comes to know about his phobic object or condition.
  • Trying hard to avoid the source at all costs.
  • Accepting that the fear for the source is uncontrollable feelings, irrational and unreasonable.

Additionally, the sensation towards the source is at higher rate and person experiences panic anxiety, that includes:

  • abnormal breathing.
  • sweating.
  • chest pain.
  • fasten heartbeat.
  • headache.
  • butterflies in the stomach.
  • nausea.
  • a choking sensation.
  • trembling.
  • disorientation or confusion.
  • dry mouth.
  • chills or hot flushes.
  • dry mouth.
  • dizziness.

Complex phobia

This type of phobia differs from other phobia and it affects the person”s wellbeing. As it is the combination of persons suffering with combination of two or more phobia. Like for example, a person haing the phobia to be left alone and closed in a trapped space.


Aquaphobia: Fear of water
Arachnophobia: Fear of spiders
Aerophobia: Fear of flying
Acrophobia: Fear of heights
Blood, injury, and injection (BII) phobia: Fear of injuries involving blood
Claustrophobia: Fear of being in constricted, confined spaces.
Driving phobia: Fear of driving a car
Escalaphobia: Fear of escalators
Erythrophobia: Fear of blushing
Emetophobia: Fear of vomiting
Hypochondria: Fear of becoming ill
Tunnel phobia: Fear of tunnels
Zoophobia: Fear of animals


Phobia can be experienced at any stage of life, but generally it is noticeable at an childhood, beginning of the adulthood and at teenage. There are numerous reason for this, which is still the topic to be researched.phobia_iHowever, the common reason for the phobia can be the past experience related to the source, stressful acquaintance or some fearful memories. Studies also reveals that sometimes, it is genetic with the combination of brain chemistry and personal insights.


Phobias are diagnosable and treatable too, especially to the people who are aware of their insights. Discussing with the psychologist or psychiatrist should be the initial and mandate step to be taken.

Before beginning of the treatment, identifying the type and reason of the phobia is the significant step. Followed by the appropriate treatment suggested by the specialized healthcare professionals can be helpful to overcome with the problem.

Bottom line

Fear or feeling of anxiety is not expressed by an adults, rather even children’s, old aged or elderly and even animals have such issues. However, children’s express their anxiety by crying, becomes clingy or hiding and leaving their parents. They starts exhibiting tantrums to express their discomforts to the source.

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