Phobia is a real thing. Except you can’t see it. And it replays relentlessly in your mind, with the attempt of controlling you, and driving you to irrational fear. You don’t pick your phobia because it subconsciously sparks inside of you. More than 10 million people in the United States succumb to this fear. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, the amygdala, an almond-shaped organ, influence our behaviour. Whether you were a kid who feared heights or an adult who loathe being in enclosed spaces such as an elevator. You most likely heard of them at least once in your life: Claustrophobia for the fear of having no escape and Acrophobia. It’s plastered all across social media, the news, and various scientific studies. However, there are some bizarre phobias you might have never encountered in your life before. And it might even relate to you, just a little, even you’re not aware of your own phobia yet. Because every human has an innate fear. Here are the top ten strangest phobias in the world.
10. Venustraphobia: An irrational fear for beautiful women
Negative past relationships can cause men to have a poor self-image, which leads to an aversion towards strikingly beautiful women. It’s the manifestation of an anxiety disorder when a person faces social situations. However, do not mistake it for gynophobia, which is an irrational fear for all women. People can manifest multiple symptoms such as Tachycardia, fear of losing control, discomfort, and shame just by watching movies or pictures on social media. According to a study conducted by the University of Valencia, men experienced an increase of cortisol in the presence of an attractive woman in 24 hours . The study shows several factors can affect that man’s cortisol: a failed past relationship, inexperience with women or a sense of self-doubt in the person who is out of their league.
9. Turophobia: The fear of cheese The fear of cheese can be foreign for some people. We eat cheese in pizza, pasta, lasagna, sandwich and for dessert: cheesecake! So, people with Turophobia justify their fear of cheese by two main reasons: the gooey texture and the strong odour. The kind of reasoning that would make most people love cheese, instead of avoiding it. By the potent smells, cheese can cause either a mild or most likely an extremely nauseating feeling. Katie Weston, a person who experiences Turophobia as a child, claims that the fear can even make her gage at even the sight of cheese. Parmesan has the most potent smell and it can even make Katie leave the room. Unfortunately, food phobias might cause misunderstandings in social settings such as family gatherings or parties.
8. Nomophobia: the fear of leaving your cellphones Unexpectedly, the wave of a new generation ( the millennial & generation Z) has created a pheromone of new phobias. Particularly, Nomophobia which is the fear of leaving your cell phone for a few hours, minutes or even seconds. This person has to be connected at all times; they might even consider it as the extension of their own arm. Researchers in the UK showed that a massive 50% of the population has this phobia. They cannot live without their cellphone. Reasoning commonly correlated with the fear of missing out. (FOMO). If they miss out on all the possible fun events on social media, it can strike a deep sense of being left out, which leads to classic symptoms such as anxiety, no sense of worth or a series negative emotions.
4. Omphalophobia: The fear of belly buttons
Omphalophobia is presented in many ways. They refused to look at other’s people’s belly button or even the sight of their own belly button. Similarly, to a person who experiences arachnophobia (fear of spiders), they can irrationally freak out at even the tiniest touch or small glimpse of a navel in view. Which means crop tops or bikinis are a no brainer to not offer as a gift. Provoking distress and extreme panic, Omphalaphobia makes it in the top list, for its unusual fear trigger. According to health24 (link 5), people with Omphalaphobia comes in three types of categories: people afraid of their belly button, but don’t mind looking at others. Second, the mild anxiety of touching or seeing a belly button. Last, extreme debilitating fear can affect a person’s everyday life.
5.Uranophobia: The fear of heaven Death provokes conflicting emotions for various people. It’s can be called as the unknown or a haven for souls. But, for people with uranophobia: it’s the irrational fear of heaven. Because no one has a definite answer after death; you’re thrown into an uncertain fate and that can create strange phobias such as uranophobia. This fear is derived from the lack of control of the uncertainty. An individual’s religion and beliefs can create a vision, that entails life after death, and sometimes it on the strict condition that only good people have access to heaven. Anxious driven people who are guilt-ridden with their mistakes have an innate fear to heaven. Because they don’t know what happens after death.
6. Oikophobia: The fear of houses The fear of your own home is bizarre. People will experience an aversion to their home surroundings, especially kitchen appliances, electrical items or specific items such as being in a bathroom, bedroom or living room. Similarly to other phobias, oikophobia develops progressively over time; a triggering event at an early age or a combination of hereditary factors. Oikophobia is a specific phobia that falls into the same category as claustrophobia. Which signifies that all phobias derived from claustrophobia have one common trait: the fear of space. It can be the fear of leaving home or returning home.
7. Aurophobias: The fear of gold Gold represents wealth. For most countries, it’s the epitome of social status. You flaunt in your accessories or sell it at a high price point. But people with aurophobia don’t see it that way. Just the view of gold can provoke a deeper subconscious fear: death. Money can cause unpleasant situations, and that includes the power of wealth. Just going out cause the start of a panic attack; because we can find gold in any shape or form. ( ex. jewellery accessories or buildings) Certain phobias are reversible and are treated through a specialist which include counselling, hypnotherapy, psychotherapy, and Neuro-Linguistic Programming.
8. Ballistophobia: The feat of bullets
Let’s hope you never met a bullet. Because this phobia is profoundly interlinked with Nucleomituphobia ( the fear of nuclear weapons). The person will experience the classic symptoms such as heart palpitations, sweat and shortness of breath. Make sure to not take them to a packed filled action movie that involves gun shooting, bomb explosions or multiple graphic scenes of missiles.
9. Chrophobia This is a subtle phobia. Almost too easy to conceal in your everyday life. Why? because a person can avoid dancing at any cost and make excuses that they don’t know how to dance, Avoiding any social setting that requires dancing, whether it’s for a wedding or a festival, is manageable. Friends will be annoyed at the person who refuses to give in, but the person’s phobia can escalate in the dangerous zone. Any type of phobia is a direct representation of a form of generalized anxiety.
10.Taphophia The fear is directly linked to the old days. From the Egyptian period to the mid 19 century, people are often mistakenly pronounced dead. And that means a person being buried alive; horror movies often portray these images and it can create a nightmare for people with Taphobia. Phobias that are linked with death trigger negative habits such as overthinking and being scared to try out anything new that might cause an accident.