What is a Phobia?

A phobia is an irrational fear of a person, thing or situation that most of us take in our stride. A person with a phobia will avoid the situation wherever possible. People can be afraid of ANYTHING!

Phobias generally fall into five main areas:

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BLOOD/INJURY PHOBIA

fear of the sight of blood; injections; blood pressure measurement; surgery; fear of the doctor or dentist.

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SOCIAL PHOBIA

fear of any kind of social situation which involves other people e.g. walking down the street; standing in a queue; visiting a restaurant; attending meetings.

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AGORAPHOBIA

fear of being away from one’s own ‘safe circle’ (this can be a small as one room, or as large as one’s home town or even country.

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SIMPLE PHOBIA

fear of animals; birds; insects; particular objects such as buttons, telephones, bridges. This is not an exhaustive list! Other well-known phobias include fear of vomiting; of something about one’s body looking or smelling wrong – probably an extreme form of social phobia; fear of heights; fear of flying.

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CLAUSTROPHOBIA

fear of enclosed spaces such as lifts, buses, trains, cinemas, theatres.

Some people experience more than one of the above phobias, for example a social phobic may become agoraphobic because of their fear of meeting people. Someone with a fear of flying may be claustrophobic and not be able to use the train or the metro.

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