open access

Vol 15, No 3 (2018)
Review paper
Published online: 2018-09-24
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Rare specific phobias - types and treatment

Katarzyna Adamczyk, Dorota Adamczyk, Rafał Wójcik, Urszula Fałkowska, Ewelina Soroka
Psychiatria 2018;15(3):148-154.

open access

Vol 15, No 3 (2018)
Prace poglądowe - nadesłane
Published online: 2018-09-24

Abstract

Specific phobia is a common disorder. According to statistics, it can affect about 20% of the population. It is characterized
by unreasonable fear of specific situations or objects and is associated with a strong desire to avoid them. Anxiety
results from an irrational or excessive evaluation of a relevant item or situation. Anxiety attack may be accompanied
by symptoms such as an abnormally rapid heart rate and breathing, nausea, chest pain, increased muscle tension or
palmar hyperhidrosis. Only the distance from the fear-producing situation or object can be freed from anxiety. Despite
the prevalence of this problem, only some people decide to start therapy. About 85% of people will never use the
available treatments. Most of people start therapy only when their daily functioning is completely disturbed by phobia.
There are four types of specific phobias: regarding nature forces, animals, situations and blood-injection-wound phobias.
Among them, we can distinguish better known phobias, such as, arachnophobia, and less frequently occurring,
i.e. ankraophobia — fear of wind. The frequency of a specific phobia depends on the geographical latitude, culture of
a relevant region, the level of educational attainment, and the structure of sex and age. Despite the differences characterizing
phobias, the treatment of this disorder is based mainly on cognitive-behavioral and psychodynamic therapy.
Literature analysis shows that in vivo exposure result in 80% positive therapeutic response.

Abstract

Specific phobia is a common disorder. According to statistics, it can affect about 20% of the population. It is characterized
by unreasonable fear of specific situations or objects and is associated with a strong desire to avoid them. Anxiety
results from an irrational or excessive evaluation of a relevant item or situation. Anxiety attack may be accompanied
by symptoms such as an abnormally rapid heart rate and breathing, nausea, chest pain, increased muscle tension or
palmar hyperhidrosis. Only the distance from the fear-producing situation or object can be freed from anxiety. Despite
the prevalence of this problem, only some people decide to start therapy. About 85% of people will never use the
available treatments. Most of people start therapy only when their daily functioning is completely disturbed by phobia.
There are four types of specific phobias: regarding nature forces, animals, situations and blood-injection-wound phobias.
Among them, we can distinguish better known phobias, such as, arachnophobia, and less frequently occurring,
i.e. ankraophobia — fear of wind. The frequency of a specific phobia depends on the geographical latitude, culture of
a relevant region, the level of educational attainment, and the structure of sex and age. Despite the differences characterizing
phobias, the treatment of this disorder is based mainly on cognitive-behavioral and psychodynamic therapy.
Literature analysis shows that in vivo exposure result in 80% positive therapeutic response.

Get Citation

Keywords

specific phobia, psychotherapy, BIIP, ambulophobia, ankraophobia, phobia of numbers

About this article
Title

Rare specific phobias - types and treatment

Journal

Psychiatria (Psychiatry)

Issue

Vol 15, No 3 (2018)

Article type

Review paper

Pages

148-154

Published online

2018-09-24

Bibliographic record

Psychiatria 2018;15(3):148-154.

Keywords

specific phobia
psychotherapy
BIIP
ambulophobia
ankraophobia
phobia of numbers

Authors

Katarzyna Adamczyk
Dorota Adamczyk
Rafał Wójcik
Urszula Fałkowska
Ewelina Soroka

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