From Wikipedia: “A phobia is an irrational, persistent fear of certain situations, objects, activities, or persons. The main symptom of this disorder is the excessive, unreasonable desire to avoid the feared subject. When the fear is beyond one’s control, or if the fear is interfering with daily life, then a diagnosis under one of the anxiety disorders can be made.” Here are the top 10 Bizarre phobias!
1. Ithyphallophobia – Fear of Erections
Defined as “a persistent, abnormal, and unwarranted fear of an erect penis”, each year this surprisingly common phobia causes countless people needless distress. To add insult to an already distressing condition, most fear of erection therapies take months or years and sometimes even require the patient to be exposed repeatedly to their fear. Known by a number of names – Medorthophobia, Phallophobia, Ithyphallophobia, and Fear of an Erect Penis being the most common – the problem often significantly impacts the quality of life. It can cause panic attacks and keep people apart from loved ones and business associates.
2. Ephebophobia – Fear of Youths
The psychological and social fear of youth. The effects of ephebiphobia appear to cause damage throughout society. At least one major economist has proposed that the fear of youth can have grave effects on the economic health of nations. Coinage is attributed to a 1994 article by Kirk Astroth published in Phi Delta Kappan. Today, common usage occurs internationally by sociologists, government agencies, and youth advocacy organizations that define ephebiphobia as an abnormal or irrational and persistent fear and/or loathing of teenagers or adolescence.
3. Coulrophobia – Fear of Clowns
Coulrophobia is an abnormal or exaggerated fear of clowns. It is not uncommon among children, but is also sometimes found in teenagers and adults as well. Sufferers sometimes acquire a fear of clowns after having a bad experience with one personally, or seeing a sinister portrayal of one in the media. The weird appearance of the clowns, swollen red noses and unnatural hair colors makes these persons look so mysterious and treacherous. Adults who are victims of coulrophobia know what they fear is completely irrational and illogical, but they can’t escape the circumstance.
4. Ergasiophobia – Fear of Work
Ergasiophobia can be a persistent and debilitating disorder in some people, causing significant psychological disability and dysfunction. These individuals may actually be suffering from an underlying mental health problem such as depression or Attention Deficit Disorder.
5. Gymnophobia – Fear of Nudity
Gymnophobia is a fear or anxiety about being seen naked, and/or about seeing others naked, even in situations where it is socially acceptable. Gymnophobes may experience their fear of nudity before all people, or only certain people, and may regard their fear as irrational. This phobia often arises from a feeling of inadequacy that their bodies are physically inferior, particularly due to comparison with idealized images portrayed in the media. The fear may also stem from anxiety about sexuality in general, or from a persistent feeling of vulnerability associated with the thought that those who have seen the gymnophobe naked will continue to imagine the gymnophobe nude.
6. Neophobia – Fear of Newness
Neophobia is the fear of new things or experiences. It is also called cainotophobia. In psychology, neophobia is defined as the persistent and abnormal fear of anything new. In its milder form, it can manifest as the unwillingness to try new things or break from routine. The term is also used to describe anger, frustration or trepidation toward new things and toward change in general. Some conservative and reactionary groups are often described as neophobic, in their attempts to preserve traditions or revert society to a perceived past form. Technophobia can be seen as a specialized form of neophobia, by fearing new technology.
7. Paraskavedekatriaphobia – Fear of Friday the 13th
A Friday occurring on the 13th day of any month is considered to be a day of bad luck in English, German, Polish, Bulgarian and Portuguese-speaking cultures around the globe. The fear of Friday the 13th is called paraskavedekatriaphobia, a word that is derived from the concatenation of the Greek words ?????????, ?????????, and ?????, meaning Friday, thirteen, and phobia respectively; alternative spellings include paskevodekatriaphobia or paraskevidekatriaphobia, and is a specialized form of triskaidekaphobia, a phobia (fear) of the number thirteen.
8. Panphobia – Fear of Everything
Panphobia, also called omniphobia, Pantophobia or Panophobia, is a medical condition known as a “non-specific fear”; the sufferer finds themselves in a state of fear but with no known target, and therefore no easy remedy. It has been described as “a vague and persistent dread of some unknown evil”. This fear is often seen as a secondary condition to schizophrenia.
9. Taphophobia – Fear of being Buried Alive
Fear of being buried alive is the fear of being placed in a grave while still alive as a result of being incorrectly pronounced dead. The abnormal, psychopathological version of this fear is referred to as taphophobia. Before the advent of modern medicine the fear was not entirely irrational. Throughout history there have been numerous cases of people being accidentally buried alive.
10. Pteronophobia – Fear of being Tickled by Feathers
Pteronophobia is the irrational fear of being tickled by feathers. Certain childhood events, such as tickling a baby, can lead to this fear as the child may feel trapped. It is related to the fear of tickling.
The fear of being pursued by timber wolves around a kitchen table while wearing socks on a newly-waxed floor. This is actually a fictional phobia which was created by Gary Larson – author of the Far Side comics.