One in every eight people have a phobia. Chances are you know at least one person who has a phobia, if you don’t have one yourself. Some Phobias are more sophisticated than others. This means that they are harder to develop but may have a more damaging effect to someone’s mental health. Simpler Phobias are a lot more common, but they’re not to be confused with regular fears. Today, complex phobias such as social phobia can deeply impact one’s life and their relationship with other people, particularly their friends and family.
A phobia is an irrational and excessive fear of an object or situation (Cherry). They fit into two categories; complex and simple. It is possible to get phobias from a close relative or friend, but note that this can be for Simple and Complex phobias. Simple phobias are usually attracted by younger people, particularly from the ages 8-20 (Kendra). There are many reasons you can attract phobias at these ages, but usually they can come from certain experiences. For example, if a child was bitten by a spider which led to going to hospital, there is a chance that the child may develop arachnophobia-the phobia of spiders. As I stated before, simple phobias and fears may be confused with each other. It’s completely natural to feel nervous when flying through turbulence, but you probably do have a phobia if you refuse an invitation to your best friend’s wedding because you have to fly there (Smith, Sengal and Sengal). Complex phobias usually can’t be contracted from an experience. They are thought to come from genetics and brain organization, but also possibly ancient instincts (Causes of Phobias).
Phobias can cause problems to people in a social setting, especially to people who have phobias like claustrophobia (the fear of tight spaces) or social phobia. Social phobia is a phobia that can cause serious problems to someone’s mental health. Being afraid to be in a social setting can make someone extremely lonely. They may only feel comfortable with certain people, making it difficult for them to make friends or pursue certain careers. Not only that, but doing everyday things like talking in front of others, going to parties, talking to strangers, eating, drinking, writing, or using the phone in front of others, using public toilets, using public transportation, or waiting in line (How to deal with Social Anxiety, Social Phobia, and Shyness).
There are many ways people can cure their phobias. “The most effective way to overcome a phobia is by gradually and repeatedly exposing yourself to what you fear in a safe and controlled way,” (Smith, Sengal and Sengal). Doing this will help the person with the phobia realise that their fear isn’t actually as bad as it seems. Usually, the person with the phobia could get help from a friend or family member who can comfort them and possibly even help them with the exposure.
Essentially, phobias are a common, global thing, which causes problems to many people. It’s important to understand how people are affected by them, but that they aren’t unstoppable. It’s not as hard as it seems to counter phobias.
"Causes Of Phobias." nhs. NHS, 2016. Web. 8 Jan. 2018.
"Causes Of Phobias." Phobics Society. Phobics Society, 2014. Web. 10 Jan. 2018.
Cherry, Kendra. "What Is A Phobia?." Verywell. Verywell, 2018. Web. 22 Jan. 2018.
"Specific Phobias - Symptoms And Causes." Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic, 2016. Web. 10 Jan. 2018.
"How To Deal With Social Anxiety, Social Phobia And Shyness." This Way Up. This Way Up, 2018. Web. 16 Jan. 2018.
Smith, Melinda, Robert Sengal, and Jeanne Sengal. "Tips For Phobias And Irrational Fears." Helpguide. N.p., 2017. Web. 12 Jan. 2018.
Wodele, Andrea, and Matthew Solan. "Phobias." Healthline. Healthline Media, 2017. Web. 8 Jan. 2018.