Fear of Bugs

ENTOMOPHOBIA - THE EXTREME FEAR OF INSECTS

WHAT IS THE FEAR OF BUGS?

While it is wise to have a healthy respect for insects since many of these critters will defend themselves by stinging or biting. While a respect, fear or dislike of an insect is common, some people have an extreme and unrealistic fear of insects. Such a condition is known as entomophobia.

WHAT IS A PHOBIA?

A phobia is a type of anxiety disorder that causes an individual to experience extreme, irrational fear about a situation, living creature, place, or object. When a person has a phobia, they will often live-out and shape their lives to avoid what they consider to be dangerous.

POTENTIAL SYMPTOMS OF ENTOMOPHOBIA

Those suffering from entomophobia show an irrational fear of when seeing or even thinking about an insect, even though the person realizes the insect(s) in question poses no actual danger, but a person with entomophobia also finds it difficult to function in a normal, predictable manner. In severe cases, sufferers are unable to cope with an object, activity or situation that might trigger entomophobia and show anxiety-related physical symptoms such as panic attacks, rapid heart rate, sweating, hyperventilating, trembling, and/or crying. Commonplace entomophobia reactions may include avoiding a friend’s home, a portion of a workplace, a basement or their bed simply because the sufferer is overcome by the thoughts that an insect or insects may be infesting those places.

OTHER TYPES OF PHOBIAS

Delusory parasitosis is the erroneous belief that the body is infested with invisible bugs, mites, worms or other parasites. This phobia is also called Ekbom Syndrome and someone suffering with Ekbom Syndrome feels the phobia causing infestation is very real and this feeling may lead them to poke and prod into their skin with fingernails, scissors, tweezers or knives to find and remove their invisible tormentors. They also typically seek help from numerous professionals, first visiting a general practitioner and later seeking second opinions from specialists such as dermatologists, mental health professionals or veterinarians. Eventually, they may contact an entomologists, their public health department, an or infectious disease specialist or their pest management specialist to identify their “parasite”, which usually in fact doesn’t exist.

Arachnophobia - a related to the extreme fear of spiders and scorpions , and other eight-legged arachnids.

Chilopodophobia - a phobia related to the extreme fear of centipedes

Katsaridaphobia - a phobia related to the extreme fear of cockroaches

Myriopodophobia - a phobia related to the extreme fear of millipedes

Ophidiophobia - a phobia related to the extreme fear of snakes

Musophobia - a phobia related to the extreme fear of mice and rats

Scoleciphobia - a phobia related to the extreme fear of worms

 

HOW TO COPE WITH A “BUG” PHOBIA

Entomophobia often isn’t able to be overcome unless the sufferer is treated by a professional, Certified Psychotherapist who is an expert in the use of one or more types of treatment therapy, which also might include specific medications required to resolve entomophobia. The goal of therapy is to develop a sense of control over thoughts and feelings, so the patient is no longer feels overwhelmed by a fear of bugs.

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